Arizona Department of Economic Security Brings Affordable Housing Opportunities through HERO Program
The Department of Economic Security (DES) Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD) refers its members to affordable housing opportunities as part of the supportive services offered by its HERO Unit. The unit, which stands for Housing, Engagement, Resource and Opportunity, was established in November 2016. Affordable housing is part of DDD’s “HERO” program, which stands for Housing, Engagement, Resources and Opportunity. In collaboration with the Housing Authority of Maricopa County, DDD members and their families who meet certain eligibility criteria may apply for this affordable housing opportunity. To be eligible, a member must receive services from both DDD and the Arizona Long Term Care System (ALTCS); have an active Individual Support Plan; be between the ages of 18 and 61; and meet certain financial criteria. This option became available in the summer 2017, with the goal of helping eligible DDD members live more independently.
As indicated in a recent news story, “The DDD HERO program has a partnership with county, state and federal housing authorities to offer affordable housing opportunities to qualified members. Studies show involvement in one’s community can have a tremendous impact on overall well-being. Connections with neighbors, family and friends, while living independently leads to a happier, healthier life. As a matter of fact, according to a joint study conducted by the American Association of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and the Association of University Centers on Disabilities, the best outcomes occurred among individuals with I/DD living in their own homes (owned or rented).”