Daily News

Way Finders Awards Two Congressman John W. Olver Scholarships

SPRINGFIELD — NeighborWorks America, through its affiliate Way Finders, has awarded Congressman John W. Olver Scholarships to two individuals — Melissa Fales, program manager for Quaboag Valley Community Development Corp., and Kerry Homstead, community facilitator for the Treehouse Foundation — to attend the NeighborWorks America Training Institute (NTI).

The scholarships provide travel, lodging, and tuition to a catalogue of more than 100 topic- and skill-focused courses. NTI creates an opportunity to network with other community-development organizations from across the country to share ideas and learn best practices in their field. Two scholarships are awarded annually to NTI attendees.

The Congressman John W. Olver Scholarship recognizes outstanding individuals and organizations that demonstrate leadership, dedication, and commitment in the housing and community-development field in Hampden, Hampshire, Franklin, and Berkshire counties.

Olver retired in 2012 after more than 40 years in public service, including 20 years serving in the U.S. House of Representatives. While in office, he not only provided strong support for NeighborWorks America, but also increased funding for housing vouchers, community block grants, and other affordable-housing programs. He was instrumental in the establishment of the National Foreclosure Mitigation Counseling Program, which assisted more than 1.5 million distressed homeowners through May 2013.