A New Bern family of 6 lost everything in a fire on Sunday and have nowhere to go starting tomorrow morning without help. No one was injured in the Sunday afternoon fire, but smoke from the kitchen fire destroyed the Foskey family’s belongings and left their apartment at Craven Terrace unlivable.  With help from neighbors, friends, and the Red Cross, they were able to find a week of shelter for them and four daughters, ages 16, 15, 8, and 6, but their aid is running out as of Saturday morning. They have lived in New Bern since 2003, and have no family nearby to takeRead More →

Applications are being accepted for the N.C. Housing Opportunities and Prevention of Evictions (HOPE) Program, which will assist eligible low- and- moderate-income renters experiencing financial hardship due to COVID-19. The new program seeks to promote housing stability during the ongoing pandemic by providing rent and utility assistance to prevent evictions and utility disconnections. “The spread of coronavirus has affected every aspect of our lives. Many have lost jobs, had work hours cut back or had to care for someone who has become ill with COVID-19,” said Gov. Roy Cooper. “By creating this program to help with rent and utility bills, we can keep people inRead More →

I woke up today flooded with photos from this day 2 years ago.  While much has been accomplished, there is still much to be done. CCDRA (Craven County Disaster Recovery Alliance) is still working to put families back in their homes. Two years post Florence and there are still nearly 1,400 cases waiting to be helped.  Many of these families are living in conditions we couldn’t imagine outside of Third World countries. But–there is still much for which to be grateful and to build upon. In the two years since Florence our Long Term Recovery Partners have made great strides. In 2019 there were 1,033 volunteers who made trips toRead More →

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced that a fee from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which FHFA previously approved and which makes refinancing more expensive for mortgages backed by those companies, will be delayed until December 1. FHFA also said the fee will not apply to refinance loans with balances below $125,000. The fee is 0.5 percent and would add an additional cost of $1,400 to the average mortgage loan. Fannie and Freddie provide financial backing for around half of all U.S. mortgages and are Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs). Today, the Center for Responsible Lending along with the National Fair Housing Alliance, National ConsumerRead More →

Mayor Dana Outlaw’s appointment of the conservative founder of the Citizen in New Bern Facebook page to the New Bern Housing Authority Board of Directors has drawn scorn from civil rights activists. “Abhorrent action taken by Mayor Outlaw in appointing Chris Ormond to the Housing Authority board — a committee that disproportionately impacts the lives of our marginalized communities here in New Bern,” Kelly Rogers posted to the Facebook group, NB Against Racism. “Atrocious action by the New Bern Mayor appointing a hateful bigot such as Chris Ormond to the housing authority. What does Chris know about these issues? What experience does he have? HeRead More →

Tried By Fire, Inc. invites women, and supportive men, to participate in a special “Make A Difference Day” on Saturday, March 28 from 9 a.m. to noon at 524 Roundtree Street in New Bern. The morning will be focused on clearing out debris and overgrown vegetation at the future site of “My Sister’s House.” My Sister’s House will provide affordable and supportive transitional housing for up to six women coming out of prison. A safe, decent and affordable home is essential for human survival and dignity. Upon release from prison, women have identified housing as one of their most urgent needs to meet the challengesRead More →

Habitat for Humanity Craven County is celebrating its 30th anniversary helping families build and own homes. A reception was held at the N.C. History Center on Saturday to commemorate the milestone. Habitat for Humanity works with families, volunteers, donors, corporations, and the community to build affordable homes. They work to transform neighborhoods through revitalization, education, innovative development, partnerships, through long term relationships with families and the community. Habitat for Humanity Craven County got its start in 1989. It has built 66 homes starting with its first in 1991, providing decent homes for 105 adults and more than 120 children. Of those, 16 have fully paidRead More →

Habitat organizations across the country are mobilizing to influence policy and system changes at the federal, state and local levels Nearly 19 million households across the United States are spending at least half of their income on a place to live, often forgoing basic necessities such as food and health care to make ends meet. In Craven County, 33% or 13,370 households, are cost-burdened and having difficulty meeting their monthly mortgage or rental payments, according to the 2017 statistics reported by the NC Housing Coalition. A family needs to earn $33,120 per year in order to afford a modest two-bedroom apartment at $828 per month,Read More →

Thirty-three college students from Connecticut, New York and Pennsylvania, along with 34 high school students and chaperones from Missouri, will be spending their spring break helping build Habitat for Humanity homes in New Bern.  WHO March 4-9 – Sacred Heart University (Connecticut) with 15 students March 11-16 –  Lycoming College (Pennsylvania) with 18 students, University of Rochester (NY) with 7 students March 25-30 – St. Mary’s Catholic High School (Missouri) with 34 students and adult chaperones WHAT Collegiate Challenge is Habitat for Humanity’s year-round alternative break program, founded in 1989 WHEN Monday through Thursday, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. each of the three weeksRead More →

Request will be made at Tuesday’s Board of Aldermen meeting New Bern community members and non-local activists will urge the New Bern Board of Aldermen to “Ban the Box” for hiring city employees at its meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 12. “Ban the Box” is a hiring practice that encourages employers to identify potential hires with the best skills and experience and delay asking applicants about their criminal records until after a conditional offer is made. Durham and Carrboro are among cities in North Carolina that have already adopted this “fair chance” hiring practice. Ban the Box is a movement started in the early 2000s byRead More →