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Mountain Association for Community Economic Development Mountain Association for Community Economic Development

"MACED understands that systemic change in eastern Kentucky requires the government to be an effective partner in the development of the region. State government has the power to create the conditions needed for positive economic development to happen, turn demonstrations and local strategies into scaled programs, and remove barriers to social, economic and environmental progress. MACED seeks to advance a state policy agenda that supports green job creation, poverty alleviation and improved environmental and health conditions through investment in energy efficiency and renewable energy."

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Energy Efficient Affordable Housing Helps Families Thrive

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Energy Efficient Affordable Housing Helps Families Thrive

People's Self Help Housing has been providing affordable housing opportunities to families in Lewis County since 1982. PSHH knows that "affordability" is defined by more than just the mortgage. If a home is energy inefficient, the utility bills become too high for a low-income family to afford. As a result, PSHH has long-built highly energy efficient homes, helping the families they serve to thrive. PSHH has also recently built some of the first affordable homes in the region with renewable energy systems. Given that so many low-income KY families live in energy inefficient homes, combining affordability, efficiency and renewable energy is a recipe for success that benefits everyone.

 

Shelby Richmond and her family is just one example of how the families PSHH serves succeed. 

 

As winter approached in late 2008, Shelby was worried. The old house she and her three children were living in was nearly impossible to keep warm during the winter months, and the cost of adequately heating the home was more than she could afford. Shelby knew that she and her family could not spend another winter there.


Shelby had inquired about homeownership through PSHH almost three years earlier. During those years, she worked hard to find a steady job, build a strong credit history, and prepare herself for the responsibilities of homeownership. Her hard work and perseverance paid off when she and her family were approved to move into a new three-bedroom home in the Fuller Branch Subdivision in 2008.

 

PSHH pushed to get her house completed three weeks ahead of schedule in December. Shelby and her family had to move out of her prior home during a week-long cold spell because it was too cold to stay there even with the heat blasting away.  They doubled up with family in very over-crowded conditions which always has ill effects on everybody involved.

 

The Ricmond family moved into their new home the week before Christmas.The children are doing much better in school now that they have a stable home and Shelby’s pride and self-worth has increased tremendously with her accomplishment of purchasing a wonderful (in her eyes) new home.  For the first time, her teenagers are comfortable inviting their school friends to their home. 


Shelby loves everything about her new home: the size of the rooms, the large backyard, and the affordable monthly payment. Most of all, she enjoys no longer having to worry about high utility bills or trying to keep her children warm during the cold winter months. Shelby and her family are looking forward to enjoying many, many years to come in their new home.

 

People's Self Help Housing is a member of the Housing and Homeless Coalition of Kentucky - a KySEA member.

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In the history of coal in America, Harlan County, Kentucky is legendary for its coal heritage, especially for the efforts of its people to organize for better living and working conditions. Labor unrest in the 1930s led to the county being referred to as “Bloody Harlan.” That same passion for progress and tradition of organizing continues today as Harlan County residents work to diversify their energy economy.

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