Lacey will commit funds to help adult teens

A long-standing plan to fund a home and services to stabilize the lives of four adult teenagers is finally coming to fruition, according to a briefing Lacey Town Council received earlier this month.

A long-standing plan to fund a home and services to stabilize the lives of four adult teenagers is finally coming to fruition, according to a briefing Lacey Town Council received earlier this month.

Rolf Boon

A long-standing plan to fund a home and services to stabilize the lives of four adult teenagers is finally coming to fruition, according to a briefing Lacey Town Council received earlier this month.

Following the briefing, City Manager Scott Spence was expected to enter into a memorandum of understanding with two other partners: Homes First and the Community Action Council.

The city is prepared to commit $260,000 – $150,000 for the purchase or renovation of a single-family residence and $110,000 for a part-time social worker who would support residents.

Specifically, residents must be four unaccompanied young women, ages 18-25, who will be living in the home and working toward their high school diploma or GED.

Homes First, a Lacey-based nonprofit and affordable housing provider, would also commit $200,000 towards the purchase or renovation of the residence.

Lacey Mayor Andy Ryder acknowledged that the town has been talking about Genesis House for some time.

“It’s taken twists and turns over the years,” he said.

It all started in 2018 when St. Mark’s Lutheran Church received a $200,000 state Department of Commerce grant to build tiny houses for homeless high school students, according to the city.

The church, however, decided not to go ahead with the project.

Later, Homes First worked with the state to shift the grant from building small homes to buying or renovating a single-family residence.

Councilman Lenny Greenstein asked how many people Genesis House would help.

The idea is that once these four graduate, they would move on and others could use the house, although the timing of all of this is still unknown, the deputy city manager said. , Shannon Kelley-Fong, who created the Genesis House. presentation to the board.

“I am very happy that this is progressing in a tangible way,” Councilor Robin Vazquez said.

Rolf has worked for The Olympian since August 2005. He covers breaking news, the town of Lacey and business for the newspaper. Rolf graduated from Evergreen State College in 1990.

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