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A GRANDFamilies Housing Success Story

Ms. Latham is a 61-year-old grandparent raising two grandchildren. She is also a former teacher and long time member of GRANDFamilies' Englewood/West Englewood Grandparent Support Group Recently, Ms. Latham shared with the group that her family was a repeated victim of neighborhood crime, harassment and intimidation at the hands of her neighbors. 

Ms. Latham and her grandson.

Ava Williamson

This grandparent has owned her house since 1983 and has never had a problem until her elderly next-door neighbor was moved to an assisted living facility. The house was consequently abandoned for three years. Eventually, condos were built which were welcome in the community. The condos were not sold and were rented to troublesome tenants. There have been many police visits to the building in the past year.  

Unfortunately, Ms. Latham experienced some negative aspects of these troublesome tenants, but she did not lose hope. 

After Ms. Latham shared her concerns and issues with the GRANDFamilies’ support group, the grandparent coordinator brought the issue to the GRANDFamilies organization.  

GRANDFamilies reached out to several community organizers and began talking with CAPS officers and 6th Ward Alderman Freddrenna Lyle's office to advocate on behalf of the family. Through the assistance of Alderman Lyle and her staff the matter has been resolved and the grandparent and the block are safe again.  

A very happy grandchild embraces a very happy grandmother thanks to GRANDFamilies' support group.

Ava Williamson

"My family has received so much support since I have joined the Englewood/West Englewood Grandparent Support Group but I never realized just how much I would grow to depend on them," Ms. Latham says.  

"The meeting held at the office of Alderman Lyle more than met my expectations. I do feel that concerns were well stated and received more openly than I anticipated. Since the meeting GRANDFamilies set up with Alderman Lyle there have been no issues whatsoever. Thank you again for everything. God bless you for what you do every day."  

For more information about GRANDFamilies Program of Chicago, please contact Ava Williamson at 773-651-8800 or Toll Free: 888.GRAND.03. You can also visit GRANDFamilies at


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