In addition to providing rental subsidies to low-income families throughout the County, the Housing Agency administers a Family Self Sufficiency Program for its clients. The program guides residents through a five year period which focuses on training, education and employment. There also the opportunity to accrue monies which are paid to the participant upon the successful completion of the program.
The Breakfast honored eight recent graduates, some of which are now off of rental assistance due to full time employment. Freeholder Director Cassandra “Sandi” Lazzara addressed the participants of the program. Freeholder Deputy Director Bruce James and Freeholder John Bartlett were also on hand to present the graduates with certificates to acknowledge their achievements.
Other speakers included Lauren Murphy, Executive Director of the Passaic County One Stop Career Center, and Maritza Davila, the Assistance Director of Admissions at Passaic County Community College. Dress for Success of Morris County was represented by Jeanne Rohach, who facilitated an empowerment session and presented several clients with suits for job interviews.
Kenneth Partyka, Area Vice President of Lakeland Bank was in attendance to offer services that the bank can provide. The Passaic County Health Department also participated in the event, along with several other FSS clients who offered hair styling, massages and a dance fitness routine.
According to Freeholder Deputy Director Bruce James, “This program is not just about assisting families with paying the rent. The Housing Agency provides the guidance for residents to achieve their goals in becoming economically self sufficient.”
Passaic County Public Housing Agency Executive Director Janice DeJohn stated, “This is a community event; it could not be successful without the support of the Freeholders, my staff, our partner agencies who provide services, the local businesses who generously donate financially, and our guest speakers who give their time to this effort. It is so rewarding to see the transformation of these individuals after years of hard work.”