WASHINGTON, DC – In an effort to help more Rhode Islanders find a safe, affordable place to call home, U.S. Senator Jack Reed announced today that three Rhode Island-based affiliates of NeighborWorks America (NeighborWorks) will receive a total of $705,000 to support their ongoing efforts to provide affordable housing opportunities, build strong neighborhoods and communities, create new jobs, and stimulate the state’s economy.  This flexible funding can be used for a variety of activities driven by the on-the-ground community needs, and helps with things like housing counseling, rehabilitating homes, and helping families successfully transition from renting to homeownership.

NeighborWorks Blackstone River Valley (NWBRV), West Elmwood Housing Development Corp., and ONE Neighborhood Builders will each receive grant funding from NeighborWorks.  NeighborWorks Blackstone River Valley will receive $285,000, West Elmwood Housing Development Corp. will receive $190,000, and ONE Neighborhood Builders will receive $230,000.  These grants are the latest of many that Senator Reed has advocated for over the years to allow each organization to further its mission of providing affordable housing for Rhode Islanders and making lasting impacts in their communities.

“These federal funds will strengthen our neighborhoods and help NeighborWorks build on its success in Rhode Island.  I am proud to secure funding to produce afford quality housing, while also creating jobs and supporting our economy.  I will continue working on a bipartisan basis to help organizations like NeighborWorks and its Rhode Island affiliates expand their reach, increase the number of people who benefit from their services, and provide more housing opportunities to help improve our communities and economy.” said Senator Reed, a senior member of the Appropriations Committee.

Senator Reed worked to successfully secure $165 million for NeighborWorks in the most recent THUD Appropriations law, which is $6.5 million more than the prior year.

Joe Garlick, Executive Director of NeighborWorks Blackstone River Valley stated: “The NWA funds Senator Reed continues to secure for Rhode Island are some of the most catalytic dollars we receive. They are critical to both kick-start a project, as well as to fill the inevitable gaps that open up just as a project is ready to break ground. Senator Reed has been a leader in increasing this valuable source over the past several years.”

NeighborWorks Blackstone River Valley (NWBRV):  NWBRV will use the federal funds for several projects, including:

  • ‘Millrace District’ in Woonsocket, which will restore three historic mills, remediate a brownfield and create 70 mixed-income ‘Live/Work’ apartments, as well as 24,000 SF of commercial/retail, office and arts fabrication space; 
  • Self-Help Housing development in Burrillville which is assisting 15 new homebuyers use their ‘sweat equity’ as part of a group to construct their homes; and
  • Enhance NWBRV existing apartment portfolio in Woonsocket.

“Because NeighborWorks funding is flexible, organizations like ONE Neighborhood Builders can implement creative solutions to community development, such as our net zero small homes initiative in Providence and the rehabilitation of 36 naturally occurring affordable housing units at Sutton Place in East Providence,” said Jennifer Hawkins, Executive Director of ONE Neighborhood Builders. “We are incredibly thankful to Senator Reed, who has been a champion for housing issues for many years and understands ONE|NB’s comprehensive approach to place-based community development. As the pandemic has highlighted, good health starts with a good home. This funding means that ONE|NB will be able to help even more Rhode Islanders have safe homes they can afford.”

“We appreciate the ongoing support of NeighborWorks America. The funding will be used to support our affordable housing initiatives, home stabilization supports and programs that aim to improve economic, educational & health outcomes for Providence residents. The support are vital as we respond to the community needs during these challenging times,” said Maria Carvalho, Executive Director of West Elmwood Housing Development Corp.

NeighborWorks is a Congressionally-chartered nonprofit that supports a network of almost 250 nonprofit organizations located in every state, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.  NeighborWorks provides grants, technical assistance, and best-in-class training that assists those organizations’ efforts to build and maintain affordable housing and to engage in community development initiatives.

In 2019 alone, NeighborWorks’ grant funding leveraged $34 dollars for every dollar invested in the state.  These resources helped to provide housing and counseling services to nearly 3,000 families and individuals, assist homeowners with their purchases, and create or maintain nearly 200 jobs.