In December 2013, NeighborWorks America, our primary source of funding, recently wrote about the “big impact” the HomeOwnership Center is having in West Virginia. Here’s an excerpt.
West Virginia group demonstrates big impact despite small staff, few resources
Imagine you lead a four-person organization that serves a city with a population of just more 7,000 people, 20 percent of whom are below the poverty line, and a lack of traditional funders like big banks. That’s the challenge John Elza, executive director of the HomeOwnership Center (HOC) of Elkins, WV, faces daily.
And then there is the additional dearth of communications channels. “Reaching customers is challenging. There’s not a lot of media and only one daily newspaper. Getting information out is hard,” Elza says. “A lot of folks don’t have a computer.”
However, the smallness in size and resources haven’t stopped HOC from working to achieve a big impact in the 15 years since its founding, despite the lingering impact of the Great Recession.