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Tuesday, Jan. 13, 2015

Reflections from Paula Sampson   

As I approach my retirement from Fairfax County, I want to wish you all a fond farewell and share my reflections on my 22 years with the County and particularly, these past 15 years as Director of HCD and the FCRHA.  It has been a wonderful experience and I have enjoyed every minute.  It is amazing how fast time flies and while I intend to stay active in affordable housing in the coming years, I am grateful for the partnership, friendship and working relationships I have been fortunate to have here.

Fairfax County is one of the best places in the country.  While I admit my bias as both a citizen and a county official, I have worked in the past at the national level and know first-hand that Fairfax rises to the top in almost every category.  And that is so true with our housing authority.  Considered one of the best in the country, the FCRHA has been rated as a high performer for over a decade.  Most recently, the FCRHA was awarded the coveted distinction of being a “Moving to Work” agency.  Only the top one percent of housing authorities in the nation reaches this prestigious point.

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Paula Sampson



Personal Story
Residents of FCRHA Properties Achieve Academic Success

The Stories of Two Residents Exemplify the Importance of Educational Accomplishments

A recent review of academic achievements by residents at four properties owned by the Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority (FCRHA) has revealed some impressive statistics.  The nonprofit organization, Fairfax Area Christian Emergency and Transitional Services (FACETS), works with youth and adults at Barros Circle, Ragan Oaks, Robinson Square, and Wedgewood Apartments.   Information that they gathered on youth shows that 38 elementary school-aged students made the honor roll this past school year as did seven middle-school students and 13 high-schoolers.  The report also shows that ten youth from these properties graduated from high school this year.  

The educational achievements do not stop with the youth at these properties.  Several adults attained noteworthy accomplishments: four adults graduated from college, university, or other educational programs; five completed a program known as Computer C.O.R.E.; and three became new citizens.  Among the “continuing learners” who graduated from educational programs are two individuals who see their accomplishments as important steps to a future in which they plan to give back to others.

Alice Fillie Faboe


Alice Fillie Faboe

In 2014, Alice Fillie Faboe completed a four-year ministerial training course in religious and spiritual studies at Living Faith Church in Manassas, Virginia.  Alice, who has been a nursing technician for many years, has a teaching degree from Africa, and a culinary certificate indicated why she pursued this accomplishment: “I want to be able to share my faith with others and in the process make disciples for the gospel of Jesus.”

“I am hoping to use the biblical training to affect positive changes in the lives of people that I come in contact with,” she stated.

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Debbie O'Brien

MTW Pilot Success Story

In 2013, the Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority (FCRHA) was named a “Moving to Work” (MTW) agency by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), in 2013.  The MTW designation allows housing authorities the flexibility to create programs that work best for their residents, allowing them to design and test innovative, locally-designed strategies to improve cost-effectiveness and help families achieve self-sufficiency.  

As part of the MTW program, the FCRHA established in FY 2014 a Pilot-Portfolio of Public Housing properties that incorporated on-site management and targeted services for residents to help improve health, education and self-sufficiency. The properties in the pilot portfolio consist of three properties in the North County area of Fairfax County:  Kingsley, West Glade, Rosedale and three properties in the South County: area Old Mill, Westford, and Greenwood. In total, 315 apartments participate in the pilot portfolio. 

Under the new pilot project, residents only need to certify every two years and every three years for those under fixed income, whereas normally residents have to recertify every six months to one year for housing assistance. This change allows program staff to spend more time working with clients to improve health, education, and self-sufficiency and less time on paperwork.

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Tips Article

A Warm Bed on a Cold Night:  Fairfax County’s Hypothermia Prevention Program

As winter weather brings freezing temperatures, the risk of hypothermia and even death is a very real concern for our homeless population. Fairfax County’s Office to Prevent and End Homelessness is collaborating with local non-profits to safeguard vulnerable residents and provide shelter and services during the winter months through the Hypothermia Prevention Program.  In addition, Fairfax County’s human service agencies provide supportive services with case management for homeless individuals and families. 

During the 2013-2014 season, the program served 1,056 unduplicated individuals. 36 shelters across the county—35 of which are places of worship, operates using more than 2,300 volunteers. It is thanks to the collaborative efforts of these partnerships that no unsheltered individuals died due to hypothermia in the winter.

The following sites are operated by shelter providers participating in the hypothermia prevention program. Click on the links below for further information:

For a list of additional resources, check out the Human Services Resource Guide.

The hypothermia shelters operate from November through March every year, with a "no turn-away" policy during freezing temperatures at all emergency homeless shelters







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