Ameedah Williams has deep connections to Atlanta’s Historic Westside.
After living on the Westside for seven years, she has developed close ties to her friends and neighbors. She has loved living by Mercedes-Benz Stadium and taking her son on walks through Centennial Olympic Park.
Another reason the Westside means so much to her is it is the legacy it holds for her family. She grew up in the Dixie Hills Community where she lived with her father before he passed away when she was 7 years old.
“It was important to me to live in that community and raise my son on the Westside,” said Williams, who moved to Lithonia with her mother after her father’s death. “This area is forever a link to my father, my son’s grandfather.”
She said, “In many ways it felt like I was returning to my original home and link.”
Yet, last year Williams worried she would be priced out of the neighborhood that means so much to her when she decided to buy a home for her and her son.
“I wanted a home, but I didn’t know if I would be able to afford it,” she said. “Becoming a homeowner to me means more than having a house. It’s also having the reassurance I can stay in this community.”
Fortunately, Williams learned about financing available to Westside residents, one of which is Westside Future Fund’s Home on the Westside program.
Home on the Westside is part of Westside Future Fund’s commitment to community retention. The program was piloted over the summer in partnership with the Atlanta Police Foundation and Pulte Homes, to provide 5 homes to legacy residents from the Westside so residents and officers will truly live side-by-side. WFF’s partner, On the Rise Financial Center (OTFC) provided financial coaching and helped applicants apply for financing.
Applications for the Home on the Westside program officially launched this month.
Ameedah said, “When this house came along, and Westside Future Fund offered me the down payment assistance to make it affordable, that was such a blessing.”
Owning her home is a dream come true. “This was so surreal to me,” she said. “It wasn’t until I got the keys that it felt real. I finally did it. I did it on my own. This was a big accomplishment for me. I wanted this house to be the place my son would grow up. It represents a new beginning, an opportunity to make memories together here.”
Sitting in her new kitchen, she said her toddler son has already made himself at home (leaving fingerprints all over the house) and she is getting used to the idea of being a homeowner.
In the short time she has been in her home, Williams has taken every opportunity to reach out to her neighbors and become part of the community. That includes turning her house into a central gathering place for all the local kids, like her mom’s house was when Williams was a kid.
“I know if I give my son a popsicle, all those kids are going to come back and I’ll have to feed the whole neighborhood,” she said. “That’s just how it goes. I’ll be looking forward to it.”
Want to find out more about the resources offered through Home on the Westside? Visit the website: www.westsidefuturefund.org/homeonthewestside and find out how Westside Future Fund and its partners are helping Westside residents remain in the community they love.