As outlined at my recent State of the City Address, the City of Fort Wayne’s Office of Housing and Neighborhood Services is working with the non-profit agency NeighborLink to help more residents make home repairs.

A $120,000 federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) will assist NeighborLink in completing up to 40 projects for homeowners that meet income qualifications. Projects up to $5,000 in both labor and material cost will be considered.

“One of our priorities is to ensure Fort Wayne residents have access to safe and affordable housing,” said Heather Presley-Cowen, director of the Office of Housing and Neighborhood Services. “This grant will help residents make repairs that will address safety concerns and allow them to remain in their homes.”

NeighborLink enlists volunteers to take on home repair projects for residents. This grant will allow the organization to tackle larger projects that require professional skills, such as furnace repairs and electrical work.

“Volunteers are the backbone of our organization, but sometimes the volunteers need a hand from professionals,” said Andrew Hoffman, executive director of NeighborLink. “We’re excited to begin this partnership that will help NeighborLink assist more homeowners and address some of our more complicated projects.”

Anyone seeking help with a home repair project should visit and post the details of the project on the NeighborLink website. Volunteers regularly visit the website and choose which projects to complete. As volunteers select projects and realize there are repairs beyond their skills, they will now be able to contact NeighborLink staff to evaluate whether the project is a good fit for the CDBG funding. Residents and volunteers may call NeighborLink at 260-710-7611 if they do not have access to the website.

I also want to share with you that the Greater Indiana Clean Cities Coalition recently visited Fort Wayne to present awards to our office. We were recognized for best practices in using biodiesel fuel and hybrid vehicles.

Greater Indiana Clean Cities Coalition works with public and private sector fleets to be a resource in those fleets’ deployment of alternative fuels and technologies.

The City’s fleet includes police cars, fire trucks, dump trucks, street sweepers, and many other work vehicles. Collectively, these vehicles are driven more than 10 million miles each year.

Fort Wayne is a recognized national leader in providing excellent fleet services. Having a top fleet demonstrates our commitment to ensuring our vehicles are safe and operating efficiently to better serve residents and businesses.

Tom Henry - Fort Wayne Mayor

A lifelong Fort Wayne resident, Mayor Thomas C. Henry is committed to public and community service. He was elected to his first term as Fort Wayne's Mayor November 6, 2007. Mayor Henry authors the "Message from the Mayor" column. > Read Full Biography > More Articles Written By This Writer