Meet Shelby Rector

appalachia, Housing | November 4, 2015

shelby photoThere are many programs available that help provide needed funding for low-income families.  Without the experience and deep community connections that Fahe provides, thousands of families would potentially never have access to these resources.  One such program that has proven vital to Appalachian families is the HOME Investment Partnerships (HOME) program.   It provides assistance to residents with the greatest challenges including seniors, individuals with disabilities, and families with children such as Shelby Rector.

“The new home is so quiet and peaceful,” said Shelby, age 20. “It’s amazing that as a single parent that I can afford to live in a home of my own that is also safe for my daughter.”

Shelby and her 3-year-old daughter didn’t always have such a home to call their own.  After Shelby and her husband divorced, she became the primary caregiver.  Her first course of action was to find a place for her and her then 1-year-old daughter to live.

Wishing to remain independent, they lived in an apartment, but soon rent, utilities, and childcare bills became too expensive to afford.  Shelby was forced to move back home with her parents and younger brother; a living situation that was less than ideal.  Her parent’s home is small and Shelby had to share a bedroom with her young daughter and all of their belongings.

Shelby was uncertain about her immediate future.  The stress of living in close quarters with other adults with little to no privacy, working, and caring for a young child was beginning to take its toll on Shelby and the entire family.  Luckily, Shelby’s mother learned of Southern Tier Housing (a subsidiary of Fahe Member Kentucky Highlands Investment Corporation).  She was able to apply for a home and was approved.  The utilization HOME funds distributed from Fahe helps make the home affordable which allows Shelby to have money for the other important aspects of her life including the care and future of her daughter.

“I would recommend that anyone who is struggling, be they a single mom or not, to ask around for programs in their area.  Having a home has changed my life and given me and my daughter a great future.  This home and this entire experience have given me a sense of independence I never expected to have.  I’m very excited and grateful.”

The HOME program helps change lives.  However, the HOME program is facing potential budget cuts that may essentially eliminate the program.  If you believe that families should have access to affordable housing and a better way of life, then you can help by contacting your member of congress and urging them to save the home program.