ROCK HILL, S.C. (CN2 NEWS) The Rock Hill Housing Authority has a new program, ROSS or Resident Opportunity and Self Sufficiency. The authority received a $239,000 three year grant that will help those in public housing move toward self sufficient lives.
The Rock Hill Housing Authority provides affordable housing for low income people in the city — with nearly 400 public housing units — they offer security. Now, the Rock Hill Housing Authority has a new program, ROSS, that’s working with those low income residents to help them find more independence.
Rock Hill Housing Authority Program Coordinator, Shawanda Erby says, “The program is intended to support current residence of public housing returning back to school, finding employment, learning about financial literacy services and also health and well-being services.”
This new ROSS program has been able to help 55 applicants, so far. Rock Hill Housing Authority leaders say that their goal is to move residence in, up, out and on to better things.
Della Robinson, Housing Operations Manager at the Rock Hill Housing Authority, says, “Well it’s a stepping stone, we don’t want anyone to be stagnant here. Different reasons bring people here, different chapters in lives — whether it’s the single mother just starting out, who needs to place for herself and her children or if it’s a retiree or a disabled person — we reach those people.”
Helping transition people out of public housing and hopefully into their own homes, one mom, in the program for a year says her kids were her inspiration. Living with 5 children, she lost two jobs during the pandemic. She says ROSS has taught her about finances and home ownership.
That mom, Lakeia Campbell says, “I was just almost destitute and she [Shawanda] showed me that I can get out of the situation that I was in with this program.”
Campbell says she strongly encourages others to join the program.
“It helped me to see past now, you know. Because when I was in that dark place I was only thinking about the now. So once I got that reassurance and you know…I’m just excited I don’t see how anybody could not, I’m telling everybody about it, you know. It’s a great program.”
“Folks do you want more, they want to have no more, all it takes is just a little bit of support and we’re here to offer than that,” says Erby.
In the video above, CN2’s Rachel Richardson is speaking with the programs leaders about how it’s changing lives.