Residents Find Hope and Peace at Los Arroyos

April 11, 2024
Los Arroyos ribbon-cutting ceremony

Los Arroyos ribbon-cutting ceremony

Having a home is about having security, protection, and hope for the future. That is the sentiment heard from Nicole, a resident of Los Arroyos, a new affordable housing community in Farmersville.

Nicole and her daughter Solene moved into Los Arroyos last December. Nicole experienced homelessness for two years and escaped domestic violence before coming to Los Arroyos.

“The first day being here was unbelievable,” said Nicole. “I held my keys and couldn’t believe this is my own home.”

Los Arroyos provides 108 homes for low-income families and agricultural workers. The development is within walking distance of transit, schools, employment, and services. There are also a community center, computer lab, after-school program, playground, outdoor spaces, and on-site supportive services.

Having a home is also about love, surviving, and being at peace, said Rojelio, another resident of Los Arroyos. He previously lived in a market-rate apartment where he struggled to pay the higher rent. As an agricultural worker, Rojelio said his work schedule is dependent on the weather – which means his paycheck was at times less than he needed.

“(Life) is less stressful,” said Rojelio. “Now I don’t have to struggle. I am surviving now without struggling.”

A development of Self-Help Enterprises, Los Arroyos was supported by more than $24 million from various HCD programs including the Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities program, the Infill Infrastructure Grant program, the Permanent Local Housing Allocation program, and the Joe Serna, Jr. Farmworker Housing Grant program.

Los Arroyos is sustainable and energy-efficient with solar panels, water conservation, and a grey water recycling system. The project also helps reduce greenhouse gases with transit improvements funded in part by HCD such as bike lanes, sidewalks, walking trail paving, transit shelters, and electric vanpooling vehicles for residents.

Rojelio spoke at the recent ribbon-cutting ceremony for Los Arroyos. He said the community is loving and welcoming, has given him a sense of calm, and inspires him to improve himself.

Nicole said living at Los Arroyos also has inspired her. She said moving into her new home prompted a journey of healing and growth. She said she has become more independent and more confident; Nicole now feels her future has potential, and she has hopes to attend pharmaceutical school.

“(Los Arroyos) is where (Solene) can grow and I can develop my skills,” said Nicole. “Having the space to cook, having a place to sleep…it is like a dream come true.”

Hear from Nicole and Rojelio in the video below.