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Self-Sufficiency Services

For some, life in RHA’s Public Housing Program is a steppingstone as they chart a path for the future that includes careers and homeownership. Services are available to help residents envision and achieve life beyond public housing.

STOKES STITT SCHOLARSHIP

The STOKES STITT SCHOLARSHIP was established for residents of Glenside and Oakbrook Homes, in appreciation of an honored Commissioner, Stokes Stitt, who believed that higher education was the most influential pathway to independence. Since the program’s inception, Reading Housing Authority has awarded over $110,000 to thirty-three residents. Students have earned degrees in architecture and design, criminal justice, social work, business, political science, elementary education, automotive repair, and other programs of study. Scholarships are awarded through competition to one resident of each development, each year, in an amount of $2,000 per year, which is renewable for up to four years if the recipient maintains enrollment and earns the required grades. Payment is made directly to the accredited school, to include traditional associate and bachelor degree programs, trade programs and certifications. The scholarship is open to residents of all ages. Applications are accepted each year by March 31.

RESIDENT OPPORTUNITY AND SELF-SUFFICIENCY (ROSS) PROGRAM

Through a grant from HUD called the RESIDENT OPPORTUNITY AND SELF-SUFFICIENCY (ROSS) PROGRAM, residents can receive help from a Service Coordinator to access public and private resources. The goal of the program is to help individuals and families increase income, reduce, or eliminate debt, and move toward economic independence. The ROSS Service Coordinator will help residents go back to school, get a job, and explore new career paths, among other opportunities.

JOB FAIRS

JOB FAIRS are hosted throughout the year with various community partners and local employers, and have included representatives in manufacturing, business and healthcare.  Keep your eyes open for announcements!

GED and ESL

Reading Housing Authority offers on-site classes in GED and ESL, through collaboration with the local community college and workforce development agencies.  Classes include support with job training, resume writing, and job placement.

RHA SECTION 3 PROGRAM

Through the RHA SECTION 3 PROGRAM, residents are considered as the best possible resource when considering candidates for in-house or contracted employment. Section 3 of the Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Act of 1968 is a legislative directive for providing preference to low and very low-income residents of the local community and the businesses that employ these persons, for new employment, and contracting and training opportunities resulting from HUD funded projects.  RHA is a covered organization which receives financial assistance directly from HUD.  RHA is committed, to the greatest extent feasible, to provide job training, employment and contracting opportunities to “Section 3 residents” and “Section 3 business concerns”.  At RHA, Section 3 residents are Public Housing residents or persons who live in the City of Reading and who have a household income that falls at or below 80% of the median income.  A Section 3 business concern is a business that is 51% or more owned by a Section 3 resident, employs Section 3 residents as permanent staff, or provides evidence of a commitment to subcontract to Section 3 business concerns in an amount of at least 25% of the awarded contract.  If you’re interested in being considered for opportunities through this program, we’d love to hear from you!

MOVE BEYOND LIFE IN PUBLIC HOUSING

For households who are financially stable and ready to take the next step, RHA is ready to help you to MOVE BEYOND LIFE IN PUBLIC HOUSING.  This could include help in finding a private rental elsewhere in our city, including the private Affordable Rentals stock at RHA, or in the surrounding county or beyond.  It could mean exploring opportunities to own a home, from simply gathering information, to being connected with local agencies who work with banks, realtors, first-time homebuyer programs, and programs like Habitat for Humanity.

HELPING RESIDENTS IMAGINE AND PURSUE LIFE BEYOND PUBLIC HOUSING

Department of Resident Services

STOKES STITT SCHOLARSHIP
Job Fair Oakbrook
Job Fair RHA
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