Education and Family Self-Sufficiency Programs

Education and Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) are programs open to all affordable housing residents of People First. The intent of our programs is to empower our residents to accomplish goals in order to achieve economic independence through education and/or family self-sufficiency. These programs are administered by the Director of Education and the Director of Family Self-Sufficiency in collaboration with the Asset Manager and Director of Grants, Programs and Compliance, under the supervision of the Executive Director.

Under the direction of the Executive Director and in collaboration with the Cabinet, the related duties and responsibilities of the Director of Grants, Programs and Compliance is to secure funding and ensure compliance with HUD and other funding sources relevant to these programs.

Under the Director of Education, intervention is available to assist in the following:

  • Obtaining an education achievement assessment
  • Referral for remedial/special instruction (ESL, Math, Reading, Writing)
  • Obtaining a high school diploma/GED
  • Obtaining higher education degree/certifications
  • Securing finances for education

Under the Director of Family Self-Sufficiency, intervention is available to assist in the following:

  • Obtaining a first job
  • Obtaining a higher-paying job
  • Budgeting skills
  • Obtaining a mortgage through a bank/mortgage lender

Under both the Director of Education and the Director of Family Self-Sufficiency, programs can be available to assist residents, not limited to the following:

  • Housekeeping education
  • Home Ownership preparation
  • Wellness programs
  • Cultural events
  • After-school programs
  • Breakfast and nutrition programs
  • Hygiene programs
  • Internships
  • Mentoring programs
  • Work Study programs
  • Counseling and Case Work referrals and services

All tenants, when registered and certified, recertified, and/or fail to comply with their lease requirements shall be referred for supportive services intervention not limited to the following:


  • Job training
  • Employment counseling
  • Educational services

Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS)

  • Credit counseling
  • Child care
  • Transportation
  • Homeownership counseling

Once a resident is certified, the Director of Education and/or the Director of Family Self-Sufficiency with respective staff shall create an outline of goals and arrange for programming, an intervention activity schedule and monitoring.

The HUD funded Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) program is an employment and savings incentive program for families who live in affordable housing. The FSS program consists both of case management services that help participants pursue employment and other goals, and of escrow accounts into which the housing authority deposits the increased rental charges that a family pays as its earnings rise. For those obtaining better-paying jobs or increases in employment, a portion of the increase in earned income will be credited to the escrow account. Upon successful completion of the program, you can apply this money for uses such as a down payment on a home, a new car, moving to private rental housing, starting a business, or paying for college. There are a limited number of slots available for the escrow savings program. Families interested in the escrow savings program must submit an application for enrollment.

As an added bonus for affordable housing participants, family members actively working toward economic self-sufficiency may be eligible for an Earned Income Disallowance (EID). EID ensures that residents are not penalized for obtaining better employment. All increases in earned income will not be included towards rent calculations for the first 12 months. During months 13-24, only 50% of the income will be included towards rent calculations.

 For further information, please call 315-735-2755 or 315-735-1281.