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Foothills Housing Partnership in full swing

COLUMBUS — What began as a mission program in 2008 through First Baptist Church of Tryon to do emergency home repairs for low-income residents has now turned into its own nonprofit.

The Foothills Housing Partnership told Polk County Commissioners during a February meeting that the partnership is taking another step, and needs volunteers.

FHP Executive Director David Graham said, from 2008-2016, FHP operated through the church, and was given permission to transfer to a nonprofit and use the funding in the account for start-up costs.

Outreach Ministry provides screening for FHP’s clients, and also donates up to $750 on projects they approve.

“George Alley [Outreach Director] was tremendously helpful in this,” Graham said.

Foothills Housing Partnership Inc. is a volunteer organization that does home repairs for low-income residents. The partnership recently acquired nonprofit status and is seeking volunteers. Pictured is a FHP project during construction. (Photo from a FHP flyer)

FHP received its North Carolina corporation status in June and nonprofit status in July, Graham said.

FHP is gearing up to start new projects this year when the weather warms up, with Graham saying volunteers are the backbone.

“As we grow, we plan to apply for grants,” Graham said.

Graham also said FHP employs local contractors to do the work and has been working with local groups.

The partnership is governed by a nine-member board of directors, with representatives from local churches, the minority and business communities, elected officials, and clients.

The goals of FHP include to conduct programs for rehabilitation, weatherization, continued maintenance or other improvements of housing owned by or available for low income residents; to provide volunteer opportunities for members of the community, and to provide the public with information regarding housing needs of low income people and resources available to address those needs; and to promote, develop, construct or otherwise provide housing for low income people, and to provide economic opportunities for low and moderate income people in the field of housing construction and rehabilitation.

FHP’s mission is to improve the quality and increase the supply of affordable housing for low-income people in Polk County.

Opportunities at FHP include: donations, team leaders, carpenters and carpenter helpers, laborers, plumbers and electricians.

For more information about FHP, contact Graham at 828-429-3822 or dgraham2@charter.net.