HomeStrong Donates Newly Renovated Tampa Home to Navy Veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom

12 March 2014
12 March 2014, Comments: 0

Donation made possible through partnerships with Bank of America and the National Community Stabilization Trust (NCST)

On Saturday, March 8th, 2014, national non-profit organization HomeStrong USA honored the sacrifice of America’s armed forces by donating a newly renovated home to Ms. Andrell Blanchard, Petty Officer Second Class in the United States Navy.

“We recognize that homeownership – a cornerstone of the American Dream – is not possible without the sacrifice of our service members,” said Jed Davis, CEO of HomeStrong USA.

“We are humbled by the sacrifice of our brave men and women, and we are dedicated to creating sustainable homeownership opportunities for heroes like Petty Officer Blanchard.”

Family, friends, American Legion members, and representatives from HomeStrong USA, Bank of America and the National Community Stabilization Trust (NCST) were on hand to welcome Blanchard and her three-year old daughter into their new home.

“I feel so blessed and honored,” said Blanchard. “I am excited for the opportunities this home will bring for my daughter.”

Following nearly 14 years of service in the United States Navy, Blanchard is transitioning into civilian life. Having conducted assignments all over the world, including time stationed on the U.S.S. Nimitz during Operation Iraqi Freedom, Blanchard now prepares to enter an uncertain workforce with limited hiring opportunities for veterans.

Fortunately, as she makes this transition, a mortgage-free home brings great stability, peace of mind, and optimism for the future.

“After months of praying and asking God to continue to help me keep the faith, I am now looking forward and ready to tackle whatever is in store for me and my family.”

The donation is just one of many homes given to military families through the organization’s HomeStrong’s Heroes program, which provides a path to sustainable homeownership for the brave men and women in America’s military. The innovative program allows HomeStrong USA to rehabilitate vacant properties to high standards, then donate the properties to military heroes or sell to them at 20% below market value, thus creating instant equity.

In addition, the program provides military families with access to ongoing financial education seminars and one-on-one housing counseling from USA Cares Certified Military Housing Specialists.

All donations through the HomeStrong’s Heroes program are made possible by Bank of America.

As part of Bank of America’s efforts to help revitalize communities and support the housing needs of those who have served and sacrificed for our nation, the company has pledged to make up to 1,000 homes available nationwide through property donations to military veteran-support charities and other nonprofits such as HomeStrong USA. Bank of America has a long history of serving our troops, serving more than 2 million military customer households and employing nearly 6,000 active service members and veterans.

Another integral organization to the HomeStrong’s Heroes program is the National Community Stabilization Trust (NCST). Partnering with community non-profits, NCST enables these groups to acquire foreclosed homes. This allows organizations like HomeStrong USA to renovate and place veterans in their own home, improving their quality of life and the local neighborhood.

“We are proud to work with community partners like HomeStrong to create housing opportunities for veterans and their families,” said Craig Nickerson, President of the National Community Stabilization Trust. “These courageous veterans honorably serve our country and deserve to be welcomed back into our communities with safe, affordable and accessible homes.”

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