2023 Annual Recap & Newsletter

 

Written by

Wendy Williams Dupont

 

As we head into the final days of 2023, I am humbled and thankful for the support that Bogalusa Rebirth has continuously gained. As founder and Executive Director since 2007, I am overjoyed that our work has reached both state and national exposure, and our networking has provided more access to funding necessary to bring vital services to our community and its residents. On behalf of our Board of Directors, we want to thank all our grantors, sponsors and partners who have made this year a success! We are looking forward to using this momentum to have an even more blessed 2024.

Reflecting on positive things happening in our town, I am proud that this year alone, we witnessed five families settling in newly constructed homes. We received a commitment from the Louisiana Housing Corporation (LHC) & U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to fund a project totaling more than $1.8 million to build the next eight newly constructed homes. In 2024, we will be injecting these investments directly into neighborhoods that need it the most for families who have worked the hardest toward homeownership. The need is great in Bogalusa for better housing, and we really work hard at our mission. We are truly beginning to bear fruits from our labor. Scattered-site community revitalization is not an easy task. It takes an extra layer of attention putting all the pieces together.

We are grateful mostly for the good Lord above, for these things would not have been possible without Him, and He’s certainly shown us throughout this year that His hands are deeply involved in our work.

We are happy to share these outstanding 

Accomplishments in 2023:

•Completed our first Single Audit for Year 2022 with total assets of $1,439,315.00, a growth of over 10x from the previous year

•Became a USDA Direct Loan Packager; hired staff for loan processing

•Added 18 new clients to our Homebuyer Counseling Program

•Received commitment from the LHC (the state housing agency) for Richardsontown Revitalization, a construction project for 8 new homes with an estimated total development budget of $1,846,734.00

•Executive Director served as guest panelist at LHC’s state housing conference

•Maintained more than $400,000.00 in CHDO Sales Proceeds for future development

•Upgraded to HomeKeeper/Salesforce Data System for client management

•Placed two special needs families in housing

•Purchased 12 lots for newly constructed homes

•Received land donations from Don Spiers & Associates, Anthony Family and James Brennan

•Secured purchase agreements for 5 future sites, one being a blighted house to be demolished

•Completed 7 property closings, thanks to Jason Mickenheim & Cypress Title

•Were issued 8 building permits

•Added two new volunteer board members

•Demolished three blighted properties, two of which are condemned to the City, and spearheaded two more

•Four new families became first time homebuyers

•Hancock Whitney Opportunity Grant for Direct Homebuyer Assistance $13,750.00

•Capital One Homebuyer Assistance Grant additional $12k for total of $48,000.00

•Rural Local Initiative Support Corp Partnership & Grant $20,000.00

•Enterprise Community Partners Capacity Grant $58,000.00

•Enterprise Community Partners Resiliency Grant $25,000.00

•CenterPoint Energy Blight Grant $25,000.00

•International Paper Blight Funds Grants to date totaling $21,500.00

•Entergy Charitable Foundation Grant $1,500.00

•Louisiana Housing Corporation Operating Assistance Grant $50,000.00

•More than $47,000.00 earned in developer and admin fees

•Housing Assistance Council/Home Depot Foundation Veteran Grant to Mr. Robert Mixon for ADA home modification.

•Selected two Bogalusa homeowners in need for critical needs repairs

•Received special invite to apply for Housing Assistance Council Grant for Persistent Poverty Parishes; application submitted.

•Received interim loan commitments from Housing Assistance Council and Hancock Whitney Bank

•Bio-removal and clean-up of a hazardous homelessness encampment

•Engaged an environmental consultant to conduct a Cultural Resources Survey in Richardsontown, to include an archaeological dig. Interesting study about the oldest part of town. A copy of the report can be viewed at the Bogalusa Library

•More than $15,365.00 collected in Direct Giving Contributions from local supporters: Jax Piper, LLC, Fane Properties, LLC & Realtor Bonnie Fane, Nobles & Associates, Our Lady of the Angels Hospital, Eye Save Optical, Charles Mehle, Jr., Don & Georgia Spiers, West 30’s Redemption Co., Walmart of Bogalusa, Bogalusa Lumber Co., Washington Men’s Club, Magic City Housing, Citizens Savings Bank, The First Bank, Realtor and Board Member Heather Seal, Rotary Club of Bogalusa, Firemen’s Federal Credit Union, Resource Bank, Wheat’s Roofing, Geaux Techy DJ, Representative White, Ardie Cesario & City Drug Store

 

Let’s make 2024 the year for HOMEBUYERS to Save Bogalusa! If we increase our homeowner stock, we can revitalize our neighborhoods! As opposed to renters, homeowners will take pride and care for their properties and not tolerate lawlessness on their block. You can make a difference in our community!

Be a part of the REBIRTH: If you know a family looking for decent, affordable housing, but may need assistance, please have them apply at www.BogalusaRebirth.com so they can be enrolled in homebuyer counseling, and so we can determine their eligibility for direct monetary homebuyer assistance for closing costs. You may email our Homebuyer Coordinator Breanna for eligibility questions at HomebuyersSaveBogalusa@hotmail.com

There is certainly joy in giving back! And your support makes our mission possible. Bogalusa Rebirth is a 501(c)3 non-profit charitable organization. To make a tax-deductible contribution, please contact our office at (985) 735-SAVE or visit the DONATE page on the website. Checks made payable to Bogalusa Rebirth can be mailed to 305 Ave B, Ste 111, Bogalusa, La. 70427. If you would like to be nominated as a board member, give us a call! To view a copy of the organizations audited financials or Form 990, please visit Guidestar.org

 

 

 

Wendy Williams Dupont

Executive Director

Bogalusa Rebirth Board of Directors

Chairman R.L. Palmer, Jr.

Kim Wagner

Tracey Williams

Heather Seal

Derek Dantin

Marlaina Addison

Dawhone Smith

Address

Inside the U. S. Post Office

305 Ave B, Ste 111

Bogalusa, LA 70427

Office Hours

Mon-Tue:  9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Thur-Fri:  9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Wed, Sat and Sun:  Closed

Contact Us

BogalusaRebirth@att.net

(985) 735-7283

Address

Inside the U. S. Post Office

305 Ave B, Ste 111

Bogalusa, LA 70427

Office Hours

Mon-Tue:  9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Thur-Fri:  9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Wed, Sat and Sun:  Closed

Contact Us

BogalusaRebirth@att.net

(985) 735-7283