Hope comes to the Logan Barrio as City of Santa Ana funds entry level housing

“Starting this fall, a crew of young people who have pledged to turn their lives around will build three houses intended for first-time buyers in the Logan community, a working-class neighborhood that police say has been claimed for generations by a gang,” according to the L.A. Times.

“Together, the group of former gang members, high school dropouts, recovering drug users and recent parolees will construct the bungalow-style three- and four-bedroom houses. The residences will be sold through a lottery for below-market prices — as little as $160,000 — aimed at low-income first-time home buyers. Preference will be given to families who live or work in Santa Ana.”

The construction workers are part of “Hope Builders, a construction company founded by Taller San Jose, a Santa Ana Catholic nonprofit that trains troubled youth in the fundamentals of construction and carpentry.”

It’s about time!  This is an exciting development.  This is the first time I can recall the City of Santa Ana getting involved with entry level housing instead of promoting luxury condos or town homes.  The City “approved a $1.5-million agreement with the Orange County Community Housing Corp., a nonprofit organization that advocates for low-income housing.”  That orgtanization then contracted with Hope Builders.

The implications of this program are incredible.  “Joe Andrade, a local activist, welcomed the project as a signal that the city was giving priority to families.  “With three more houses, we’re making this back into a residential area,” he said.”

And for the former gang members in this program they have at last achieved redemption and can take pride in what they are doing.  The trades offer a fantastic source of income for these young people.  I commend them for getting involved in this program and turning their lives around.

And of course kudos to all the players involved in this story – from the sisters at Taller San Jose to the City of Santa Ana.  This is a move in the right direction!

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"Admin" is just editors Vern Nelson, Greg Diamond, or Ryan Cantor sharing something that they mostly didn't write themselves, but think you should see. Before December 2010, "Admin" may have been former blog owner Art Pedroza.