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12/23/2020

HUD Awards Jacksonville Housing (JH) a new $321,453 grant through the department's Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) Program

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has awarded Jacksonville Housing (JH) a new $321,453 grant through the department's Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) Program.

"This new grant will give us the resources to connect more of our residents with employment and educational opportunities in the new year," said JH interim CEO Dwayne Alexander.

HUD's Family Self -Sufficiency (FSS) Program funding helps local public housing authorities to hire Service Coordinators who work directly with residents to connect them with existing programs and services in the local community. These Service Coordinators build relationships with networks of local service providers, who provide direct assistance to FSS participants. The broad spectrum of services made possible through FSS enables participating families to find jobs, increase earned income, reduce or eliminate the need for rental and/or welfare assistance, and make progress toward achieving economic independence and self-sufficiency.

Participants in the program sign a five-year contract of participation requiring the head of the household to set specific goals and achievements allowed under the FSS Program. To successfully graduate, the head of household must be employed and no member of the FSS family may have received cash welfare assistance for twelve months prior to program graduation. Families in the FSS program have an interest-bearing escrow account established for them. The amount credited to the family's escrow account is based on increased rent due to improvement in the family's earned income during the term of the FSS contract. Upon successful graduation, the head of household receives the escrow funds and are able to apply those funds to advance their personal circumstances, including, for example, paying educational expenses or making a down-payment on a home.