Thursday, March 14, 2013

Single Mom Goes Back to School and Buys a Home with the Help of Community Action

When Betty Jo first came to Supports to Encourage Low-income Families (SELF), the designated Community Action Agency for Butler County, she was a struggling single mother who was working full-time. She had been taken advantage of by others and she seriously doubted her ability to succeed.

Betty Jo enrolled in SELF’s Individual Development Account (IDA) program and went back to college to finish her degree in Botany. She maintained high grades in college while working two part-time jobs and diligently saving money each month to buy a house. Her savings will be matched 2:1 by SELF when she makes a down payment on a home.

SELF taught Betty Jo how to budget through the seven-week money management course, connected her with first-time homebuyer counseling and worked with her to improve her credit. After just one year of being enrolled in SELF’s IDA program, Betty Jo went back to college, raised her credit score by 100 points and will soon fulfill her dream of being a first-time homebuyer.

Although Betty Jo has achieved so much in such a short time, the most noticeable transformation has come from her new found self-confidence. SELF provided the tools and support; Betty Jo worked hard to implement the plan.

For more information about Community Action programs in your area, visit Note, not all Community Action Agencies offer IDA programs.

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