FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT) - Sarah Williams has lived in the Oxford neighborhood on Fort Wayne's southeast side for about 50 years.
She's seen changes in her neighborhood and not all of them good. Increase in violence, decrease in property value, and houses not being taken care of.
"Some of the houses going down, needing repairing and we just need to get something done with it," Williams said. "People can't afford it, so they just let it go and eventually it's ignored."
Fort Wayne's TenPoint Coalition has been working on the violence in the community, and now they want to improve the properties.
They've helped develop the TenPoint Facade Program. Homeowners in the Oxford Community can apply for grant money to help improve their homes.
Carl Woods is an Oxford Community Association member. He says a program like this is desperately needed.
Woods said, "It's been a long time coming. For some reason, we felt that it's probably been overlooked for a long time, so it was well needed."
The first recipient of a facade grant is John Bugg, a 40-year resident of the neighborhood.
"I was shocked," Bugg said. "I have tried for similar projects in the past and i've never been fortunate enough to be chosen."
He's received roof repairs, window replacements, and lead paint removal from his house thanks to the façade grant.
The neighbors are taking notice of the improvements in their neighborhood.
"I think it's beautiful. I want mine to look just like that, if I could," Williams said.
The application process has actually closed for this early period, but be on the lookout for the application period.
Call 311 to find out more about the program.
The first grant recipient is John Bugg. Mr. Bugg is a veteran who has lived in his home on Woodview Boulevard for forty years. pic.twitter.com/TQut3obDyv
— Mayor Tom Henry (@MayorTomHenry) November 21, 2019