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McHenry County Community Development Division receives national honor

(from left) Sheryl Kenny, Zak Klehr, Jordan Bartle, Hans Mach, Vicki Watson, Keith Lampkin and Anne Marie Belrose pose with a 2020 Audrey Nelson Community Development Award.
(from left) Sheryl Kenny, Zak Klehr, Jordan Bartle, Hans Mach, Vicki Watson, Keith Lampkin and Anne Marie Belrose pose with a 2020 Audrey Nelson Community Development Award.

The McHenry County Community Development Division earned national recognition for its work on Pearl Street Commons, a 25-unit development built in 2018 to cater to veterans in need and people with disabilities.

The department was honored during a Jan. 31 ceremony with a 2020 Audrey Nelson Community Development Award. Only five of these awards are given away each year by the National Community Development Association, a nonprofit representing local governments that administer economic development and affordable housing programs.

“The availability of permanent supportive housing for our disabled and veteran populations is paramount,” McHenry County Community Development Administrator Hans Mach said in a news release. “We are grateful for our partnership with Full Circle Communities in making this vision a reality.”

The $7 million Pearl Street Commons development includes 25 one- to two-bedroom apartments for veterans and the disabled. The facility also has a library, computer lab, community room and other amenities.

Local non-profit service providers TLS Veterans, which provides help for veterans in need, and the Association for Individual Development, which provides independent living solutions for the disabled, provide services to residents at no cost, according to a news release from the McHenry County Department of Planning and Development.

Pearl Street Commons is administered by Full Circles Communities, a Chicago-based agency seeking to expand access to quality affordable housing. The agency manages more than 800 facilities in three states with another 250 approved or under construction.

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