Miss Virginia 2010 Delivers Keynote Speech at Third Annual Fairfax County Family Self-Sufficiency Meeting
Fairfax County Department of Housing and Community Development
3700 Pender Drive, Suite 300, Fairfax, Virginia 22030
For information contact: Kristina Norvell, Director of Public Affairs
Tel 703-246-5104 Fax 703-246-5115 TTY 703-385-3578
December 7, 2010
Participants in the Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority’s Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) Program recently gathered for the third annual meeting of the nearly 100 participants of the FSS Program. The keynote address was delivered by Caitlin Uze, Miss Virginia 2010, who inspired the audience on the power of positive choices and a positive attitude in the journey toward self-sufficiency.
“It was so uplifting to me to see people taking control of their lives and deciding that they want something better for themselves. Making a change can be difficult, but there is always a reason to pick up and keep going, and there is always a blessing to be found in the process, sometimes you just have to change your outlook to find it,” said Miss Virginia. “It was very touching to me to see the response I got from opening up about overcoming adversity in my own life and the lessons I have learned through some of my own difficult times—mainly that you have to create your own happiness and appreciate the lessons and and gifts that are effectuated through struggle.”
Established in 1999, 105 households have graduated from the FCRHA’s FSS program and there are currently 97 additional households enrolled in the program. The FSS Program is an innovative program that assists current participants in the Housing Choice Voucher and Public Housing Programs reach economic independence over a five-year period. Through benefits such as job readiness services, education and self-improvement training, participants are given tools to reach their goal of self-sufficiency. The Program also offers participants an escrow savings account where when their earned income increases, the portion of their rent increase that would be applied due to the higher income, is placed into a savings account that can later be applied such things as the purchase of their first home and higher education.
Images on the right: Fairfax County Family Self-Sufficiency participants with Miss Virginia.