Nonprofit to turn vacant nursing home into transitional housing for former foster kids

Unlimited Potential hopes to close on the property on Anderson Street soon.
Published: May. 18, 2021 at 3:32 PM CDT|Updated: May. 18, 2021 at 6:07 PM CDT
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COLLEGE STATION, Texas (KBTX) - Young people who have been in the foster care system could have some new options for a place to live and learn new skills. At the last College Station City Council meeting, the council recommended staff look at a loan application worth up to $3 million.

Unlimited Potential, a nonprofit based in Bryan plans to buy a former nursing home site at 1115 Anderson Street in College Station. The group wants to turn the vacant facility into a 25 apartment, temporary housing center for young people aged 18 to 25 who are concluding their time in foster care.

“I think it’s pretty great. I think it’s a great option and to give kids the extra push that they might not have anywhere else and never had anywhere else,” said Markayvia Elmore, an Unlimited Potential Client who is 19.

The organization has space in Bryan by the Center for Regional Services where they can help former foster kids learn life skills.

“I’ve been homeless for so long, been looking for shelter for so long so when [Unlimited Potential] was able to help out it’s pretty, pretty good,” Elmore said.

Having a transitional facility is something the organization and members of the community say is highly needed.

“A lot of times when people age out of the foster care system, they don’t have anywhere else to go or they don’t have the support systems in place that they need,” said Ted Randall, Unlimited Potential Program President of the Board.

“The plan would be to take those 50 units, turn them into suites so they would be small apartments where they would have a housing area on one side with one of the rooms, with a place where they can study, learn different tasks, work on GED. Work on college. Whatever it may be. Work on skills training and then they would have a bedroom where they could have their own privacy,” Randall said.

The College Station City Council has approved staff looking at up to a $3 million loan for the project.

“This project will be a great improvement for the area and we hope to look at other potential projects in that area in the future, and it will take public participation,” said Debbie Eller, College Station Director of Community Services. Eller added public participation will be important if nearby neighbors have questions or concerns.

“Having a program like this can give other kids the kind of push that they need in order to take the next step in life,” said Elmore.

Unlimited Potential hopes to close on the property soon and launch a capital campaign to raise money for renovations. Since January of 2020 they’ve helped out 23 young people.

The Brazos Valley Council of Governments and the Brazos Valley Community Development Corporation are also contributing a bridge loan of about $1.4 million for the project.

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