HUD center in Williamson to help public housing residents

Published: Oct. 5, 2020 at 7:26 PM EDT
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WILLIAMSON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - It’s a place that will provide federal resources to more than 500 people in public housing. The EnVision Center was unveiled Monday at an announcement attended by state and federal leaders.

Pauline Sturgill is the housing director. She worked for months to make this a reality.

“We do a lot of stuff, but this really increases the scale of opportunity,” Sturgill said.

The partnership is between the Williamson Housing Authority and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. It is geared to empower residents with resources they did not have.

The EnVision initiative partnered with the Williamson Housing Authority largely because of the programs they already provide for residents.

“Cooking and nutrition classes, heart healthy classes, so its a classroom setting entrepreneurial programs,” Sturgill said. “Oh gosh, the list goes on and on.”

It is the first center of its kind in West Virginia. The Envision Center is funded by the Williamson Housing Authority, but the partnership provides more opportunity for federal grants.

Joe DeFelice is a regional administrator for HUD.

“We can put all this in one roof behind this building, and it will also give Sturgill a direct line with us and to work with the other housing authorities that are within this region,” DeFelice said.

There are 11 centers in the region, including in Philadelphia and Washington.

DeFelice was appointed by President Trump. He said their goal is to help people who live in public housing feel more self sufficient and empowered.

Residents in public housing at Williamson Housing Authority get first priority in the programs, but Sturgill said their services are not income based; they are open to the whole community.

Copyright 2020 WSAZ. All rights reserved.

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