ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- After raising more than $16 million over the last two and a half years, the Jeremiah Program finally unveiled its newly-built affordable housing center Wednesday.
It's located near the intersection of Valleyhigh Drive NW and 19th Street NW.
The organization first came to the Med City in 2016 to provide a path out of poverty for single moms. It offers early childhood education, life skills training and opportunities for higher education.
"It's been a long time coming," said Jeremiah Program resident Kayla Stewart. "Now that we're finally here, it's amazing."
The new building houses up to 40 families and aims to serve as a safe, supportive community for single mothers.
"Where I was living before, it wasn't the safest neighborhood," Stewart said. "I was scared some days. And so to bring a new baby into that environment, it was a huge safety concern. Now that I know I'm in a safe place, I don't have to worry anymore."
The program also offers opportunities for growth. Now that Jeremiah Program resident Julia Kaloumenos has access to daycare for her daughter, she is able to pursue higher education.
"I really want to get a degree in social work," she said. "So this has really changed my life for the better."
Stewart says single moms who are struggling should "stay motivated."
"It may be hard," she said. "But if you're struggling, if you're having issues with your mental health, if you feel that you're broken down, you will get through it."
The Jeremiah Program is currently open for single moms who are interested in joining the community. On Nov. 10, the organization will hold a grand opening event and give a virtual tour of the new building.