TIFTON, Ga. (WALB) - Just a few weeks ago, 2019 high school and college graduates were congratulated for their hard work and dedication for this past school year.
Many walked across the stage and into dorm rooms on college campuses and others walked off college campuses into their first dream jobs.
What many don’t realize is that there are a number of students who are in public housing.
“I think it is important for our kids here in Tifton Housing Authority because it is a special recognition and we are identifying just the kids,” said Melanie Nunley, the residential services and community outreach manager.
The Tifton Housing Authority celebrated these students at a recent graduation ceremony in downtown Tifton.
“We are looking at the fact that you have graduated from high school, technical school or college and we are proud of you. We want you to go on in life,” Nunley said.
The ceremony was to let the students know that the organization was very proud of them and they pushed on against all the stigmas of public housing.
“Some of the stigmas are they are not doing anything, they are just hanging around on the street corner and stuff, they don’t complete high school but that is so untrue. We have a lot of kids doing a lot of wonderful things,” Nunley said.
The Tifton Housing Authority and the board gave the students a certificate, gifts, luggage set for traveling and even a check.
The ceremony was for a total of 17 students who are going off to college or moving on to the next chapter in their lives.
The Tifton Housing Authority is an environment that helps families that are in need and believes all kids are special, especially those in public housing.
The housing authority has a public housing program that families in need can apply for.
In order for a family to be selected, they must first apply. The application is free and can be downloaded from the Tifton Housing Authority website or picked up at the housing authority office at 1425 N. Tift Avenue, Building 15.
If you want to apply, officials said the application process can take between six months to a year.
“Public housing is for low income families and is considered a stepping stone to upper mobility. We are here to help folks in a time of need so that they can better themselves and move on up. We don’t want them to stay here forever,” said Charlene Tucker, the administrative specialist for the Tifton Housing Authority.
The program has helped a total of 20 families so far.