"When people ask us about Proud Ground, we explain that the reason we own a home is because of our partnership with Proud Ground. We would not have this home without that partnership."
Angela and Casey had been saving their pennies for years, but were nowhere near having enough money for a down payment on a home of their own. But they were more than ready, having lived in seven different rentals over eight years.
A grant from Proud Ground and the Native American Youth and Family Center (where Casey teaches math in NAYA’s Early College Academy) helped make their dream a reality – and their monthly house payment is just $50 more than they paid in rent.
When she first walked in her door as a homeowner, Angela remembers thinking, “Wow, this is ours, not a landlord's, but our family's, to make into our own home!” Quickly followed by, “Wow! I am responsible for all of this!”
And is she ever! Angela and her family have been busy turning their yard into an edible landscape – with a charitable angle.
While volunteering with Birch Community Services, a non-profit serving families in need, Angela learned that the BCS Teaching Garden needed a new home. Angela explains, “Thanks to Proud Ground and NAYA, we had a sunny 1/4 acre, so we volunteered our property. And now we donate almost everything we grow.”
Angela isn’t the only gardener in the family. Casey, who is a member of the Chickasaw Nation, has been working in a family garden since he was a child in Kalama, WA.
And what’s the gardeners’ favorite thing to make from their bounty? “Our favorite recipe: Preheat the oven to 350F. Wash three handfuls of curly kale, and remove central stem. Toss kale in olive oil and sprinkle with sea-salt (I like a little rosemary, too). Bake in a 9x13 casserole dish for 10-15 min or until crisp. Makes an excellent appetizer, snack, or side dish.”