OPELOUSAS, La.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--A lighthouse can serve as a navigational aid for a lost vessel at sea. In this case, local nonprofit organization Opelousas Lighthouse Mission (Lighthouse) provides transitional housing and rehabilitation services to homeless men, many of whom struggle with addiction.
Thanks in part to a $500,000 Affordable Housing Program (AHP) grant from the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas (FHLB Dallas) and St. Landry Homestead Federal Savings Bank (The Homestead), Opelousas Lighthouse Mission will construct a new 64-bed transitional housing facility for homeless men. Construction will begin in February 2017 and is estimated to be completed in December 2017.
Lighthouse Executive Director Johnny Carriere said this grant could not have come at a better time. The current Lighthouse facility, which accommodates 32 men, only has two showers. In addition to the shortage of on-site resources, Lighthouse also turns away approximately 50 percent of applicants every year.
“It’s a real challenge. This new building will give the guys a more comfortable living space and provide them with more dignity,” said Mr. Carriere.
Mr. Carriere also praised The Homestead for its support of the project.
“They are a true community bank and supportive in every sense of the word,” said Mr. Carriere.
FHLB Dallas annually returns 10 percent of its profits in the form of AHP grants to the communities served by its member institutions, like The Homestead. AHP grants fund a variety of projects, including home rehabilitation and modifications for low-income, elderly, and special-needs residents; down payment and closing cost assistance for qualified first-time homebuyers; and the construction of low-income, multifamily rental communities and single-family homes.
“The AHP grant can be a lifesaver,” said Anthony Kip Bertrand, president and CEO of The Homestead. “The grant is crucial to getting projects like this off the ground and getting in-need individuals into safe, affordable housing.”
Greg Hettrick, first vice president and director of Community Investment at FHLB Dallas, said FHLB Dallas is proud to help The Homestead support its customers through the AHP.
“The AHP grant helps The Homestead strengthen their relationship with their customers and the community as a whole,” said Mr. Hettrick.
The grant was critical to the Lighthouse’s expansion, according to Mr. Carriere.
“This is a game changer for a small organization like ours,” he said. “It’s very exciting. We still feel like we’re dreaming.”
About St. Landry Homestead FSB
At St. Landry Homestead Federal Savings Bank, we believe in the communities that we serve. Our philosophy is simple – “investing your money in the local economy to help keep this area sound.” Established in 1922, The Homestead has weathered the Great Depression, two World Wars, and the inevitable rises and slumps in the economy without compromising our values or goals. We are continuously updating our products and services to make sure that every member of our community can be served. Visit stlandryhomestead.com for more information.
About the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas
The Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas is one of 11 district banks in the FHLBank System created by Congress in 1932. FHLB Dallas, with total assets of $58.4 billion as of September 30, 2016, is a member-owned cooperative that supports housing and community investment by providing competitively priced loans and other credit products to approximately 850 members and associated institutions in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, and Texas. For more information, visit fhlb.com.