Valley housing initiative helps residents bounce back
PHOENIX — Two apartment complexes in Phoenix are offering more than just a roof over the heads of some people who need help getting back on their feet.
Residents at The Palms and The Residences at Camelback West apartment complexes in the Maryvale area get free mattresses, dining tables, microwaves, silverware and other essentials when they move in.
Plus, they get assigned a social worker who helps them navigate the healthcare system and connects them with a slew of services. Those services range from getting a ride to their doctor’s appointment to getting free clothes for a job interview.
“They really set you up here so you’re independent, and you can get on with your life and make things better,” said Elliot Lincis, a resident at The Palms.
Many of the residents of the apartment complexes have several things in common. They were recently homeless or struggled to have stable housing, and they have health insurance UnitedHealthcare.
The insurance company partnered with the Latino-focused community organization Chicanos Por La Causa to purchase and renovate the two apartment complexes, which opened in December of 2016.
Joe Gaudio, CEO of UnitedHealthcare Community Plan of Arizona, said both complexes combined have about 500 units in total. Of those, 100 are designated for people who have health insurance through UnitedHealthcare and about 40 units already have residents living in them.
Guadio said residents are provided support services “so that these individuals can be successful, and they can change their lives.
“At the end of the day, this is about creating that path to self-sufficiency and breaking the cycle of poverty,” Gaudio said.
Lincis said having a place to live is already changing his life.
“I really appreciate all that they’ve done here and am thankful for allowing me to get my life back together,” he said. “I feel like I’m bouncing back.”
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