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Donna & Bob Russell receive the keys to their new home

Citrus County Housing Services Gives Local Families a Hand Up

By Meaghan Goepferich Posted on May 10, 2021

On Saturday, May 1, 2021, Citrus County Housing Services joined Citrus County Habitat for Humanity at the first public home dedication event since 2020. New homeowners Robert and Donna Russell received a $10,000 State Housing Initiative Partnership (SHIP) First Time Home Buyer Grant from the Housing department, along with assistance from the James A. Haley Veterans Affairs office and Habitat for Humanity.

Citrus County Housing Services Gives Local Families a Hand Up

This partnership between the three organizations helped the once-homeless veteran’s family to become self-sufficient and secure into their own new home.

A month earlier on Tuesday, March 30, 2021, Housing Services hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony for another Citrus County family. Summer Hormell and her five young daughters received the keys to their new home, which was built using funds from the SHIP program. Many local community partners came together to provide additional support for the family, including Lewis Brothers Construction, Key Training Center, Habitat for Humanity, The Sanctuary Mission, Nature Coast Affordable Housing, and the Annie Johnson Center. Furnishings, appliances, gift cards/certificates, and even Easter baskets were among the items donated.

The SHIP Assistance program is just one of the many services available through Citrus County Housing Services. This division administers state and federally funded housing programs for home repairs and improvements, provides subsidies through our local non-profit developers to first time home buyers for down payment assistance, provides rental assistance, coordinates grant awards to affordable housing developers for rehabilitation and/or new construction of homes for very low income and special needs families, as well as for affordable rental developments, and provides grant subsidies for mandatory utility connections and emergency energy assistance.

For more information about Citrus County Housing Services programs, call (352) 527-7520 or visit


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