Community Foundation of Boone County supports HAND expansion

Noblesville-based HAND Inc. has been awarded a $5,000 grant to support expansion of the nonprofit’s affordable housing services into neighboring Boone County.

This grant was made possible by the Community Foundation of Boone County’s Community Impact Fund. Among other things, it will help pay to equip a community room at HAND’s Hickory Commons development, giving low-income residents access to on-site services such as financial literacy and nutrition education classes.

HAND already is investing more than $2 million to acquire and renovate the 17 duplexes that comprise Hickory Commons, which will provide 28 affordable apartments for residents earning no more than 60 percent of area median income; 5 units will have market-rate rents.

Hickory Commons is HAND’s first affordable rental community outside of Hamilton County. Founded in 2003 as Hamilton County Area Neighborhood Development Inc., HAND has seven properties with a total of 106 units in its home county.

According to American Community Survey 5-year estimates, about 20 percent of Boone County homeowners and 44 percent of renters are considered cost burdened, spending more than 30 percent of their household income on housing.

HAND’s mission is to be a leader in promoting prosperity and diversity in its communities by providing quality housing opportunities for low- and moderate income individuals and families.