Project NOW is rehabilitating single-family homes and duplexes for local veterans to rent at an affordable rate.

Affordable housing means not paying more than 30% of your income for housing. A recent housing study, Silos to Solutions, indicates the gap of 6,645 affordable units in the Quad Cities, according to a Wednesday release from Project NOW.

Dwight Ford, executive director of the community action agency based in Rock Island, said that housing is the anchor of all opportunities and he’s excited to announce this new program. Local dignitaries cut the ribbon on the first home today (June 29) at 620 14th Street in Rock Island.

Major Gen. Jeffrey Jurasek, First Army Deputy Commanding General for Support, spoke at Wednesday’s ribbon-cutting held by Project NOW in Rock Island.

Ford said that veterans who have supported and provided service to others, should also receive service and support when needed.

“Our veterans often do not ask for much and choose to live a life of service giving to others,” he said. “We are fortunate, as those which live in the Illinois Quad Cities have an opportunity to witness the support and service they give, as we are the home to an Army installation (Rock Island Arsenal).

“We are also close enough to witness those who continue to face financial challenges due to high unemployment rates, after their transition from active duty and the economic challenges their families face due to the persistence of the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic impact,” Ford said. “This endeavor honors the commitment of veterans while strengthening our community service to one another.

“It’s about honor. It’s about a place to call home,” he said.

Project NOW executive director Dwight Ford (right) with Major Gen. Jeffrey Jurasek, First Army Deputy Commanding General for Support (based at the Arsenal) on June 29, 2022.

The first two-bedroom home — to rent for $490 a month — is sponsored by donations from Estes Construction, Sisters of St. Benedict, United Way, Modern Woodmen of America and First Baptist Church in Moline. Humble Dwellings is providing all the home’s furnishings.

The other homes that will become Honor Homes are:

  • 505 13th Avenue, Rock Island
  • 103 N. Elm Street, Kewanee
  • 402 7th Street, Moline
  • 929 12th Ave., Rock Island
  • 518 6th St., Rock Island

The next to be completed, by December, will be the Moline home. To apply to rent an Honor Home, visit Project NOW’s website.