WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Jack Reed announced today that three Rhode Island-based affiliates of NeighborWorks America (NeighborWorks) will receive a total of $757,333 in funding to support their ongoing efforts to provide affordable housing opportunities, build strong neighborhoods and communities, create new jobs, and stimulate the state’s economy.
NeighborWorks Blackstone River Valley (NWBRV), West Elmwood Housing Development Corporation, and ONE Neighborhood Builders will each receive funding from NeighborWorks. Nationwide, NeighborWorks is providing over $68 million to 243 affiliated nonprofits in this first of two rounds of grant funding for fiscal year 2017. NeighborWorks Blackstone River Valley will receive $295,333, while West Elmwood Housing Development Corporation will receive $172,000, and ONE Neighborhood Builders will receive $290,000. These grants are the latest of many that Senator Reed has advocated for over the years to allow each organization to expand its mission of providing affordable housing for Rhode Islanders.
“I commend NeighborWorks and these organizations for working to ensure that Rhode Islanders can access affordable housing,” said Senator Reed, the Ranking Member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (THUD). Despite the fact that President Trump proposed de-funding NeighborWorks America in his March 2017 budget proposal, Senator Reed worked to successfully secure $140 million for NeighborWorks in the 2017 Omnibus Appropriations bill. “These federal funds will strengthen our neighborhoods and help more Rhode Islanders afford suitable housing, while also creating jobs and stimulating our local economy. I will continue working on a bipartisan basis to help organizations like NeighborWorks provide more housing opportunities and move our economy forward.”
NWBRV enriches neighborhood life in Northern Rhode Island by creating affordable housing opportunities, from redeveloping vacant mills to constructing single family homes and neighborhood commercial space. The organization’s plan for its next project is a 55 unit, mixed-use re-development of several vacant historic factory buildings. The buildings are located in the Woonsocket’s Creative Arts District, adjacent to NWBRV’s commercial kitchen, public market, and event space.
“We greatly appreciate Senator Reed’s leadership and support for this flexible funding through NeighborWorks America. It is a source that allows us to push the envelope when it comes to developing affordable housing and creating vibrant neighborhoods throughout Northern RI ” said Joe Garlick, Executive Director of NeighborWorks Blackstone River Valley.
West Elmwood Housing Development Corporation seeks to promote the development of healthy, sustainable communities by providing housing services and helping individuals and families meet their affordable housing needs in Providence’s West End neighborhood. The organization is now in the planning stages of the Dunamis Project, an intergenerational housing and education effort aimed at lifting families out of poverty. The project is a partnership with Roger Williams University to support young parents with affordable housing while they earn a degree.
ONE Neighborhood Builders engages in comprehensive community development in the Olneyville and Elmwood neighborhoods of Providence through the construction of affordable housing, along with community building, resident engagement, individual asset building, and neighborhood stewardship. This year, ONE plans to strengthen its real estate portfolio of 350 units of multifamily rental housing while expanding community-based services and programs following a 2016 merger with Community Works Rhode Island.
NeighborWorks is a Congressionally-chartered nonprofit that supports a network of more than 240 nonprofit organizations, located in every state, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico by providing grants, technical assistance, and best-in-class training that assists their efforts to build and maintain affordable housing and to engage in community development initiatives. In fiscal year 2016, NeighborWorks funding leveraged $7.1 billion in investments in communities across the country and over $50 million in Rhode Island. Last year, the organization helped more than 360,000 families nationwide, including 2,069 in the Ocean State, to obtain affordable housing. NeighborWorks organizations also created or maintained more than 53,600 jobs and helped 21,000 individuals and families purchase homes nationwide, including 324 jobs and 130 new homeowners in Rhode Island.