The housing complex, which is located on the west side of LaBelle, initially opened in early 2010. The expansion of Palmetto Ranch brings 14 more units of disability-accessible housing to Hendry County.
Palmetto Ranch resident Debbie Marshall spoke at the June 9 ribbon cutting ceremony. Marshall utilizes a power wheelchair as the result of a vehicle accident nearly 20 years ago.
“I couldn’t afford rent anymore,” Marshall explained in a heartfelt speech. “Collecting disability, we don’t get that much income. By having this here, it makes it easier for us to survive. Things are so much easier for me now.”
Rent at Goodwill’s disability-accessible housing complexes is subsidized by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Residents pay a monthly rent that is based on a percentage of their income.
Goodwill’s accessible housing features amenities such as lowered countertops and cabinets, roll-in showers, and widened doorways, all of which are necessary to make a home truly accessible to people in wheelchairs.
The agency currently operates apartment complexes in Lee, Collier, and Hendry counties. Goodwill hopes to expand its housing efforts in Hendry County by building an apartment complex in Clewiston in the next two years.
Watch the Goodwill Palmetto Ranch ribbon-cutting:
Goodwill Industries of Southwest Florida provides programs and services to help people with disabilities and other disadvantages become more independent. For more information about Goodwill, please visit http://www.goodwillswfl.org.
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About Goodwill Industries of Southwest Florida:
Goodwill operates 25 thrift stores in SW Florida to support its mission of removing barriers to independence. Programs include income-sensitive housing, career placement assistance, the L.I.F.E. Academy Charter School, Four Wheels for Work, and others.