AUSTIN, Texas – The Fayette County Disaster Recovery Team plans to bring hope to Hurricane Harvey survivors in LaGrange through a planned 64-home subdivision. The subdivision project, Hope Hill, is being funded and developed by the recovery team in collaboration with the nonprofits Samaritans’ Purse and Mennonite Disaster Services.
The goal of Hope Hill is to provide affordable housing to survivors whose homes along the Lower Colorado River flooded after Hurricane Harvey. The project will move residents out of the floodplain and onto higher ground.
Disaster survivors moving into Hope Hill will use any federal disaster assistance they have received in combination with “sweat equity” as down payments on their homes. Joy Cameron, president of the Fayette County Disaster Recovery Team, said 30 families are ready to move in once the houses are complete.
“Hope Hill will provide a piece of the American dream for these families,” she said.
The deed-restricted subdivision will have a homeowners’ association and will be managed by a land trust, which will hold the homes’ deeds. Each month that a family owns and maintains their home, the family will receive a credit toward home equity.
Cameron hopes all the houses will be completed within three years. In addition to the homes managed by the land trust, Cameron said lots will be offered to developers and builders, and will be sold to the general public.
Hope Hill is just one of many projects spearheaded by recovery groups to help Texans recover from Hurricane Harvey. Long-term recovery groups in Victoria County and Wharton County are planning similar housing initiatives based on best practices learned following a disaster in West Virginia.
Recovery groups such as the Fayette County Disaster Recovery Team include representatives from volunteer, faith-based and community-based organizations, government agencies, the private sector, schools, foundations and others who work together to assist survivors recovering from a disaster.
Those groups work closely with FEMA’s voluntary agency liaisons (VALs) and nonprofit partners to help Texans recover. The VALs share expertise gained on previous disasters and guide the groups as they assist survivors in their recovery.
By leveraging resources from philanthropic, charitable and faith-based organizations, the recovery groups help their communities utilize volunteer labor and donations to aid their recovery.
For additional information on Hurricane Harvey and Texas recovery, visit the Hurricane Harvey disaster web page at www.fema.gov/disaster/4332, Facebook at www.facebook.com/FEMAharvey, the FEMA Region 6 Twitter account at www.twitter.com/FEMARegion6 or the Texas Division of Emergency Management website at https://www.dps.texas.gov/dem/.