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Media Release

Partnership Brings Greater Access to Affordable Housing to Northwest Jacksonville

Self-Help Credit Union Partners with Northwest Jacksonville CDC to Offer Greater Flexibility And More Affordable Housing Opportunity

Oct 23, 2023


Jacksonville, FL – Self-Help and Northwest Jacksonville CDC (NJCDC) celebrate the start of a new partnership that brings greater access to affordable housing to Northwest Jacksonville. With a mission of ownership and economic opportunity for all, Self-Help is one of the fastest growing community development financial institutions in Florida. To help fund the creation of affordable housing in the area, Self-Help was able to establish a construction loan that will give NJCDC more flexibility to create more affordable housing opportunities in Northwest Jacksonville. 

“It’s an ideal partnership, states Jonathan Leysath, Business Development Manager for the Jacksonville region. “Northwest Jacksonville CDC transforms vacant overgrown lots to build and sell high-quality affordable homes to working families. Providing NJCDC greater access to liquid assets supports their goal of helping more people become homeowners and fits perfectly into our mission.” 

According to published reports, the high cost of rental units, lack of affordable housing and limits on the types of housing that can be built are some of the main causes of the housing crisis in Jacksonville. In addition, investors buying up property are not making them available to low- and moderate-income households. 

“NJCDC works to transform Northwest Jacksonville neighborhoods by creating opportunities that lead to economic recovery and empower residents to create a better life for the community,” states Paul Tutwiler NJCDC CEO.  This partnership will bring much needed resources for the betterment of our community.”  

Tutwiler is a long-time member of Self-Help who knows the organization’s long history working to strengthen financial security and create home ownership opportunity for families who have often faced systemic barriers to building wealth and economic inclusion. He approached Self-Help with the concept of the Self-Help NJCDC partnership that would bring more affordable housing to the community in the summer of 2022.  

The result: a new three-bedroom, two-bathroom home located off Golfair Boulevard was completed late last month, built with affordability and quality in mind. The home is now available to families who earn less than $55,000 a year, or 80 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI). 

"Access to funds is the cornerstone of community development,” Tutwiler adds. “Without the resources to build homes, we can't lay the foundation for stronger, more vibrant neighborhoods. With every dollar invested, we're not just constructing houses; we're building hope, stability, and a brighter future for our community." 

"Self-Help, widely seen as one of the fastest growing nonprofit community financial institutions in Florida, is continuing to build on its long legacy of mission-driven service to working families, immigrant farmworkers and other underserved communities," states Adelcio Lugo, Self-Help southeast regional president. "Building stronger communities in Central Florida through partnerships that support affordable housing perfectly fits with our commitment to work for economic opportunity for all."   

About Self-Help Credit Union 

Self-Help Credit Union was chartered in 1983 to build a network of credit union branches to operate on a scale uncommon in the community development industry. We are part of the Self-Help family of nonprofit organizations with a common mission of homeownership and economic opportunity for all.  Over its 40-year history, Self-Help has learned that access to responsible savings, loans, and other fair, affordable products are key to financial security and improved opportunity for families who have often faced systemic barriers to building wealth and achieving economic inclusion.   

About Northwest CDC 

Northwest CDC (NJCDC) was founded in June 2001 “out of concern for community decline and blight,” according to the organization’s historical narrative. In 2004, NJCDC sold its first home, beginning a track record of addressing neighborhood improvement, blight elimination, and crime reduction by improving the quality of housing stock, leading community engagement activities, and infusing commercial and retail services into the area. To date, the organization has built more than 150 homes and inspired an additional 122 homes to be built by others within a half-mile radius of its main office. NJCDC also built Northpoint I, a $4 million development that is home to the NJCDC Corporate office, a DOH Children's Dental Clinic, a long-standing local establishment owned by the president of the District of Soul Business Association, and other nonprofit and business enterprises that bring pride to the community. This location also serves as the venue for more than 40 community and business meetings and events annually. 

Jonathan Leysath,  Business Development Branch Manager | PH: 803-226-1689 Email: 

Jenny Shields, Director of Media Relations, Self-Help Credit Union | Direct Line: 919.794.6798 Email: