FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 25, 2016
Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas
Army Vet Awarded Specialized Grant for Home Repairs
HAVEN Grant from Kirtland Federal Credit Union and FHLB Dallas Replaced Windows
ALBUQUERQUE, NEW MEXICO, October 25, 2016 — After a 16-year career in the military, including a tour in Iraq where she hauled 13 pounds of equipment in and out of a truck every day, U.S. Army Veteran Carla Torres has her scars – both physically and mentally.
Now, as a widow raising two children on her own, she had a new problem to deal with – replacing 14 windows on her Albuquerque, New Mexico, home.
The seals on Ms. Torres' windows were disintegrating, filling her home with dust and debris and offering little protection against the brutal cold in the winter. But thanks to a $9,100 Housing Assistance for Veterans (HAVEN) grant from the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas (FHLB Dallas) and Kirtland Federal Credit Union (Kirtland FCU), she was able to replace the windows in her home.
"Without the grant, I wouldn't have been able to afford the new windows," said Ms. Torres. "The people at Kirtland FCU were absolutely amazing to work with. They were so helpful and never made me feel like they were doing me a favor."
HAVEN is a unique grant program offered by FHLB Dallas through its member institutions, such as Kirtland FCU, that reaches out to veterans and active-duty service members who have been disabled in the line of duty since September 11, 2001. It provides grants up to $7,500 to support necessary home modifications. To qualify, veterans must also meet income eligibility requirements.
Ms. Torres joined the military after four years as a secretary at a television station. She was deployed to Iraq six years later and worked as a bodyguard to the Army chaplain, who famously does not carry a weapon. It was during this tour that she was injured. Jumping out of a truck every day carrying 13 pounds of gear wreaked havoc on her back. Ms. Torres now lives with chronic back pain and is unable to work.
It was also during this tour that she met the love of her life, Adolph. They were married four years later in 2008 and had two sons, now ages 5 and 7. Mr. Torres earned a Purple Heart for his service after encountering a roadside bomb. Just four years later, when their youngest son was 18 months old, Mr. Torres was killed in a motorcycle accident.
As a single mother, there isn't a lot left over for extra expenses. Ms. Torres' Wounded Warrior advocate told her about the HAVEN program. FHLB Dallas and Kirtland FCU have awarded more than $83,000 to assist 10 veterans since the HAVEN program's inception in 2011.
Kirtland FCU Assistant Vice President of Public Relations Charles Crisler facilitated the HAVEN grant application process for Ms. Torres. Mr. Crisler is a 30-year military veteran, having served in four combat deployments including Operation Desert Storm and Iraqi Freedom.
"I love being a part of the HAVEN grant program," said Mr. Crisler. "I'm a military veteran so I have a clear understanding of what these veterans have experienced. It's been a pleasure to help these 10 families."
This year, FHLB Dallas has made available through members a new $75,000 allocation to the program. The program launched in 2011, with $250,000 set aside for the program.
"It is an honor to help someone who has worked hard to protect our freedom," said Greg Hettrick, first vice president and director of Community Investment at FHLB Dallas. "Thanks to Kirtland FCU for their continued partnership and commitment to this program."
Ms. Torres said the work funded by the HAVEN grant has improved her quality of life. "Since the new windows were installed, my home is much more comfortable. I'm really grateful that there are programs like this out there," she said.
About Kirtland Federal Credit Union
Kirtland Federal Credit Union (Kirtland FCU) is one of the largest credit unions located in the greater Albuquerque area in New Mexico. Founded in 1958 by 10 airmen from Kirtland Air Force Base, they provide a full range of financial products and services from checking and savings accounts to a wide array of lending products. Kirtland FCU has four branch locations in Albuquerque.
About the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas
The Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas is one of 11 district banks in the FHLBank System created by Congress in 1932. FHLB Dallas, with total assets of $54.4 billion as of June 30, 2016, is a member-owned cooperative that supports housing and community investment by providing competitively priced loans and other credit products to approximately 865 members and associated institutions in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, and Texas. For more information, visit fhlb.com.