Project Homekey houses 57 individuals in Tulare, giving local unhoused people hope for the future

Kassandra Gutierrez Image
Sunday, May 5, 2024
Project Homekey houses 57 individuals in Tulare, giving local unhoused people hope for the future
57 unhoused people in Tulare are now tenants in a secure and safe complex funded by Project Homekey.

TULARE COUNTY, Calif. (KFSN) -- In Tulare County, Move-in-ready apartments for now being filled with their first tenants in Tulare.

The new fully furnished "Madson Gardens" complex off of Highway 99 on Road 94 is providing shelter and on-site support services to previously unhoused people.

Residents started moving in last month and by June all 57 units will be full.

This project is already changing lives.

Deanna Lemus says she has been feeling, "Thankful, grateful and happy," since April 3.

It was the first night she laid her head to rest in her new apartment.

The secure and safe space is a lot different than the streets she lived on for six years.

The new complex was funded by Project Homekey, a statewide effort to combat homelessness.

Tulare County received about $14 million dollars.

This apartment complex, which was previously a motel, cost millions to renovate.

But the new opportunities and changes it's already making, are priceless for Deanna..

Deanna says, "I have more confidence and more security, it's just a lot better. All the way around, I have electricity, I have running water, I have a bathroom, I have a kitchen and I have a bed to sleep in. That is something that six months ago I can say I didn't have."

It's also something over a thousand people in Tulare County don't have, according to the most recent point in time count.

The 57 units, right off highway 99, are going to help change that for dozens.

Tenants sign a one year lease and pay 30% of their income.

Project developers, including UPholdings and RH Community builders worked with Tulare County and City of Tulare to help make this happen.

"It's hard work and it pushes people to deal with hard stuff and this project has really been a successful reminder that we can do that work and make good outcomes," says Jessica Hoff Berzac, President of UPholings.

For Deanna, this life-changing housing opportunity has given her hope.

And faith, that one day she will be reconnected with her 10 year old daughter and 11 year old son.

"My plans for the future, get everything straightened out, get a job, hopefully get my children back and just show the world that not every homeless person is a bad person," expresses Deanna.

The program is by referral only, so if you or someone you know is in need of resources, contact the Kings-Tulare Homeless Alliance.

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