Rural Development, a division of USDA, has programs that meet the needs of many people in rural areas of the country. Recently, Rural Development assisted Campti resident Winnie Perot. Through a combination of grant andlow-interest loan, Mrs. Perot was able to have the foundation of her house and roof repaired.This allowed her to continue living in her home of thirty years.
Mrs. Perot, or Ms. Winnie as she is affectionately known, was married to Mr. Delma Perot, who passed away five years ago. Ms. Winnie was left to maintain the family home, not an easy task for a woman in her seventies, while on a fixed income. Her home was in dire need of repair. The home was still on the original blocks, which had begun to settle into the ground, causing the floors and roof to buckle. The addition had settled leaving large gaps between the wall and the floor, which caused even more damage to the floor. The condition of the home was slowly degrading her health.
Enter Rural Development. Ms. Winnie had attended a USDA Strikeforce Outreach Meeting held in Coushatta, LA, in April of 2015. These meetings bring together specialists from various USDA agencies (such as Rural Development, Natural Resources Conservation Service and Farm Service Agency) with people in local communities, so that the public can learn about and access the financial and technical assistance programs offered by these agencies. Ms. Winnie was able to begin the process of applying for a grant and low interest loan from Rural Development that would cover the cost of the needed repairs to her foundation and roof. Since she was over 62, she qualified for a grant of $7,500. She also qualified for a low-interest loan (1%) of $7,499. She found a contractor that would do the work and, once the application process was completed, work began on her home in October was completed before the end of that month.
Ms. Winnie is now able to live in the same home that she shared with her husband and raised her family. The low interest loan was less than $7,500 so it did not require a mortgage. She has the peace of mind knowing that the home will stay in her family for years to come. Her loan payment on $7,499 is only $35 per month, which is an immense help for a person on a fixed income. These two programs are just a tiny sampling of what Rural Development offers to any community in the parish, and state as a whole. Not only will they help you to repair your home, they will also help individuals and families purchase or build a home. For more information about this and other USDA programs, join us at our next outreach event which will be held in Rapides Parish in the LeCompte Town Hall, 1302 Weems Avenue, LeCompte, LA 71346 on Wednesday, December 16, 2015 at 9:00 a.m.
These workshops are hosted by Campti Field of Dreams, Inc., (DREAMS) a Louisiana non-profit organization with IRS 501(c)3 tax exemption. DREAMS is dedicated to improving the quality of life in underserved communities.For more information, you can contact Donna Isaacs at Campti Field of Dreams, 318-332-7791 or USDA Natchitoches, 6949 Louisiana Highway 1 Bypass, Natchitoches, LA, 71457, 318-357-8366.