USDA grants $190K to boost rural communities in Puerto Rico
The US Department of Agriculture has allocated $189,661 through several of its programs to improve equitable access to jobs, business opportunities, education, housing, and health care for people who live and work in rural areas in Puerto Rico.
Initiatives in the towns of Aguas Buenas, Barceloneta, Cidra and Vega Baja are benefiting from these investments, said Luis R. García, acting state director for USDA Rural Development in Puerto Rico.
The Center for Habitat Reconstruction Inc. is receiving a $89,661 Rural Community Development Initiative Grant to provide technical assistance to three rural communities in the towns of Aguas Buenas, Cidra, and Gurabo.
“They will carry out collaboration planning activities, local government capacity building and promote implementation strategy with aims to transform abandoned properties into assets for recovering community redevelopment and long-term resilience,” he said.
Meanwhile, the municipality of Barceloneta is receiving a $50,000 Housing Preservation Grant to help five low- and very-low-income people make health and safety repairs to their homes.
Finally, the municipality of Vega Baja is also receiving a $50,000 Housing Preservation Grant to repair six rural properties to very low- and low-income families. This award will help families that do not have the resources to improve their own properties, the agency said.
In total, the USDA is investing $86 million in improvement initiatives in rural areas. The funding will help more than 425,000 people in 46 states, Puerto Rico, and the Western Pacific.