Thirteen graduate from the RHA Family Self-Sufficiency program

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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - Thirteen people living in Rockford Housing Authority properties are one step closer to becoming financially independent.

Over the past five years, the graduates of the Family Self-Sufficiency program have worked toward goals of going back to school, buying a home or purchasing a new car. The program gives money back in escrow as people complete steps toward their ultimate goal. That money can then be used for a down payment or school courses.

Graduate Tikisha Ferguson says the program has changed her life.

"I didn't' think I would be here today. Just the different referrals and the help they provided to get me on my way is truly a blessing," says Ferguson.

RHA CEO Larry Williams says he has seen success for dozens of people who have completed the program. He believes the incentives given through the program help families to continue to grow and thrive once they graduate.