40 Stories for 40 Years – Profilee 27
During his time as a UMA Rockland Center student in 2011, Pablo discovered the Family Development Account matched savings program through a NVME staff member at the college. Once he learned more about the program, he decided to enroll and take steps towards his goal of homeownership.
As part of the matched savings program, Pablo took the 5-week My Money Works class. Pablo remarks, “You don’t know what’s out there until you discover it. Through New Ventures Maine, I learned about managing my money, improving my credit score, and the FDA Program. The only way to learn is to reinforce what you learn and keep it fresh. I take advantage of new classes as they’re offered.”
When an affordable house lot in Camden became available, he seized the opportunity. Pablo had an unusual combination of architectural awareness and construction skills. This combination of skills would greatly help him in designing and building a home for his family. The 4:1 match gave his savings a real boost, allowing him to apply a total of $10,000 towards his closing costs. He had always been a saver and the FDA program strengthened that skill.
At the same time that he was building his home, Pablo was finishing his education. Pablo now uses his degree in Mental Health and Human Services in his daily work as a case manager with a local homeless coalition. He finds meaning helping others to find homes and start new lives.
Pablo’s family moved into their new home on Valentine’s Day 2016. NVME staff member Melinda Wildes shares, “Pablo’s perseverance and hard work, energized by his optimistic and hopeful nature, transformed the value of our programs into the realization of his goals.”