Nurse assistant's roof in critical condition before SNAP grant arrived

Nurse assistant's roof in critical condition before SNAP grant arrived

NATCHEZ, MS - This is a news release from Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas

Former nursing assistant Nita Delancy, 71, has spent the last year nursing her home: Holes in the roof and kitchen ceiling meant she emptied buckets and buckets of rainwater. But then an article in "The Natchez Democrat" alerted her to the Special Needs Assistance Program (SNAP) from the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas (FHLB Dallas) and its member institutions, like Home Bank.

"I would sit up all night to empty buckets when it rained," she said. "I had holes in the roof and kitchen ceiling that kept getting bigger." Those holes also were entryways for insects and geckos who came inside every day, she said.

In January, Ms. Delancy was awarded more than $4,800 in a SNAP grant from Home Bank and FHLB Dallas to install a new roof, fix the ceiling, and repair a portion of her carport, which was rotting. The work was completed this month.

"The first time we had a hard rain after the roof was put on, I jumped up in my sleep to get buckets, and I ran into the door!" she said with a laugh. "My head hurt for a couple of days, but it's nice and safe again in the house. I never knew if the rest of the ceiling was going to fall in."

SNAP grants assist income-qualified, special-needs homeowners with necessary home repairs and modifications. Now retired after 20 years as a nursing assistant, Ms. Delancy lives on a fixed income.

"Home Bank participates in the SNAP program because we have seen the impact it has on Natchez residents," said Deanna Bowser, SVP and Mississippi market president at Home Bank. "We are glad that these grants can significantly improve the quality of their lives."

Natchez Mayor Butch Brown put the grants in perspective. "This is the fifth time the city and our banking partners have participated in the SNAP program from FHLB Dallas," he said. "This program has been a blessing to our community and to the many residents who have received assistance."

Since SNAP's inception in 2009, more than $10.6 million has been awarded in grants through FHLB Dallas member institutions to assist more than 2,000 families across FHLB Dallas' five-state District of Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, and Texas. In 2015, FHLB Dallas awarded nearly $1.5 million in SNAP grants that assisted 319 families. The 2016 SNAP funding, made available in January on a first-come, first-served basis, has been exhausted.

"Our District has a great need for these grants," said Greg Hettrick, first vice president and director of Community Investment at FHLB Dallas. "It is great to see the public-private partnership between Home Bank and the City of Natchez continue to be so effective in assisting homeowners on fixed incomes."