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The Wrights, Uphams Crossing

A photo of the Wright family; ©Mike Ritter

Christine Wright's journey to a new, affordable apartment at Uphams Crossing in Dorchester was not an easy one.

With a young daughter, she had to overcome homelessness, substance abuse and incarceration.

"She overcame what many of us would have buckled under," said Lisa Alberghini, president of the Planning Office for Urban Affairs (POUA), which redeveloped the former St. Kevin's School campus into 80 units of new affordable housing, some of the apartments for formerly homeless families and families at risk of being homeless. MassHousing provided $2.5 million in financing for Uphams Crossing through the Affordable Housing Trust Fund.

For Christine and her daughter, Gianna, the opportunity to live at Uphams Crossing has transformed their lives.

"We came from a shelter," she said. "We spent years moving from couch to couch, never having a place of our own. We are so excited and grateful to be here. Gianna deserved to have a good life."

Christine's life had hit bottom when she was a victim in a serious domestic violence incident. It turned around with the help of Marisol Batista of Casa Nueva Vida, an organization that works with homeless families. Marisol helped Christine with the application process that allowed her to be selected to live at Uphams Crossing.

"Gianna always asked me why we couldn't have our own home," Christine said through tears. "We have a place now we can call our own home. A place we can be safe and live in peace. There are no more sleepless nights. We have a key to our own home and now there is nothing we can't do."