COALMONT, Tenn., Apr 26, 2011 -- Older homeowners in Grundy and Marion Counties will soon be eligible for help to make needed home repairs thanks to a partnership between Mountain T.O.P. and USDA Rural Development (RD).
RD State Director Bobby Goode today joined Mountain T.O.P. Executive Director Ed Simmons and Program Director Kim VanGundy in the announcement of an $80,000 USDA grant to purchase materials and equipment needed by the organization's home renovation and repair program for the elderly and disabled. The event took place at Camp Cumberland Pines.
"Mountain T.O.P. is the kind of innovative non-profit organization we like to partner with," said Goode. "From a small beginning they have developed a great track record for transforming communities and changing lives."
Mountain T.O.P. volunteers will contribute $168,000 in labor and Home Depot's Framing Hope Campaign is contributing an additional $20,000 toward materials. Ten rural residents in Grundy and Marion Counties have already been selected based on applications for assistance received during the last year.
Volunteers will provide a wide range of improvements to remove health or safety hazards and increase accessibility for those with disabilities. "This news gives us hope that we can continue helping our neighbors in real, life-altering ways," said Simmons. "We are grateful to all involved in the selection process. God bless you."
Mountain T.O.P. (Tennessee Outreach Project) is an interdenominational, non-profit Christian Mission affiliated with the Tennessee Conference of the United Methodist Church, dedicated to rural life ministry in the Cumberland Mountains of Tennessee. More information is available at www.mountain-top.org.
Others participating in the event included Sen. Lamar Alexander's Representative Evann Freeman, Rep. Scott DesJarlais' Representative Jeff Lewis and RD Area Director David Collett and staff Randy Bishop and Sonya Montgomery.
Homeowners looking to alleviate unsafe conditions, make repairs, or add needed space may also be eligible for a very low-interest RD home-repair loan. The interest rate on these loans is fixed at one-percent and payments may be spread over as much as 20 years to keep the monthly payments affordable for those on a fixed income.
USDA Rural Development invests in jobs, businesses, community infrastructure, homeownership and affordable rental housing in rural communities. Last year Rural Development assisted more than 1.5 million rural Tennessee families and businesses with more than $1.06 billion in financial assistance through affordable loans, loan-guarantees and grants.
For more information on the meeting or USDA Rural Development programs available in southeast Tennessee contact the Rural Development Area Office in Chattanooga at 423-756-2239, ext. 2, toll free at 1-800-342-3149 ext. 1492 or online at ㋰§Ⓦ〣" www.rurdev.usda.gov/tn.
USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender. To file a complaint of discrimination, write USDA,
Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20250-9410,
or call (800) 795-3272 TDD (615) 783-1397.