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Housing And Support Services For Youth Aging Out Of Foster Care In IOWA

Youth aging out of foster care can get housing and other assistance with the new affordable housing development. 


October 5, 2023

Opened in July 2022, Sixth Avenue Flats in Des Moines, Iowa, is a 42-unit affordable housing development by Hatch Development Group, serving individuals and families earning up to 60% of the area median income. The project, in partnership with Youth & Shelter Services, reserves five units for young adults exiting foster care, aiding their transition to independent living by offering support services and stable housing.

There are 42 apartments in the Sixth Avenue flats building consisting of one-two and three-bedroom units ranging from 700-1300 square feet. All the apartments have Energy Star appliances such as washers, dryers, and vehicle charging stations. Many housing units are live-work lofts where residents are allowed to work on the first floor and live on the second floor. 

Besides this, there is a grocery store, parks, convenience store, parks, colleges, and other medical centers near the housing units. 

The primary funding for the development was derived from low-income housing tax credit equity. The city of Des Moines contributed with a $164,000 forgivable loan anticipated from tax increment financing revenue. The Iowa Economic Development Authority and the Polk County Housing Trust Fund, backed by state and county governments, also provided additional financial support.

Besides addressing the demand for affordable housing, HDG also recognized the need to house youth aging out of foster care. It is because, after foster care, youth are left with minimal support and need to find a place to live on their own. Consequently, the youth will not only receive stable housing and rental assistance but will benefit from several on-site services. 

The staff available also helps the residents address substance abuse and mental health challenges and offers training in life skills. The residents can seek staff’s help for transportation assistance, parenting, volunteer opportunities, and more. 

Residents enrolled in a free introduction to a college class at DMACC have the option to pursue an associate’s degree or training certificate, with access to additional DMACC services including tutoring, mentoring, and career fairs. A dedicated college employee assists residents in navigating and accessing these programs and services.

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The content provided in this article draws inspiration and includes quotes from various reputable sources, including news articles, government data, and interviews. Affordable Housing 411 strives to ensure accuracy and credibility, but the information presented may be based on some external sources. We encourage readers to refer to the referenced materials for more in-depth insights and verification.

HUD User. “Providing Housing and Support Services for Youth Aging Out of Foster Care in Des Moines, Iowa”. HUD User, October 3, 2023, 

Providing Housing and Support Services for Youth Aging Out of Foster Care in Des Moines, Iowa | HUD USER

Last Updated: September 20, 2021