Coleman program looks to help people find jobs while rebuilding neighborhoods

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COLEMAN, Texas (KRBC) — The city of Coleman is dealing with a problem. Some are calling the ‘eyesores’ in neighborhoods. They are abandoned or run-down homes and some organizations said is is driving people away, who are looking to buy or rent homes.

Well, the Central Texas Opportunities (CTO) in Coleman is started a new program called “Cornerstone Community Development”, to help fix up these homes and get first-time homebuyers signed and moved in.

The program is essentially hitting two birds with one stone by sprucing up the neighborhood and by putting people who cannot find jobs, whether it be someone with a history of incarceration, or drugs, to work.

“Where ever the need is, that’s where we go,” said CTO executive director, Hanna Adams.

When CTO noticed the number of eyesores in some neighborhoods and the number of hard-to-employ people began to take a toll on the community, “Cornerstone Community Development” was born.

 “Being part of that, when people buy a home and have a stake in their community, they become self-sufficient and it not only helps the low-income person, it helps the community at large, because we’re not just about people, we’re about a community,” Adams said.

The house on 315 Hollywood Street in Coleman is the first to be part of  the program to help folks get financing.

“Many times, people feel like they can’t purchase a home because of maybe their credit or not having a down payment,” CTO program director Tammy Smith said.

The organization will work with lenders who are willing to go out on a limb for first-time home buyers.

“Working with them to build their credit and then start working on different programs that are available with the down payment and clothing cost assistance, and a long with that, there will be getting money management and will be taking a home buyer’s course,” Smith said.

Another part of this program would hire those who are hard to employ.

“We have several people in our communities that want to find a job, need a job and are willing to work, but because of past history, they have a hard time finding that job,” Smith said.

Helping them become stable in the environment and become self-sufficient.

“They will be getting training and skills and they can continue to work with that contractor or possibly move on to another contractor,” Smith said. 

A person is employed, the house is renovated and then is sold to a family who needs housing and qualifies for a mortgage.

“It doesn’t matter where they are on the spectrum of income. We welcome everybody because even if they’re over-incomed for our programs, they can still gain knowledge,” Adams said.

Those who are interested are asked to call CTO at (325) 625-4167. The program covers seven core counties:

  1. Brown
  2. Callahan
  3. Coleman
  4. Comanche
  5. Eastland
  6. McCulloch
  7. Runnels

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