At Cabrini, Secretary Carson, who also is a neurosurgeon, attended a roundtable with parents and local officials, listening to their concerns and explaining in detail the many services HUD offers to their community and residents such as the newly enacted Opportunity Zones.

Opportunity Zones were established by a new federal law providing business and real estate tax incentives for those who invest within an Opportunity Zone. The program has led to many new opportunities in under-resourced neighborhoods.

“By the Hand, its students and their families, are pleased Secretary Carson spent the day with us and saw the work we are doing with the 1,350 students attending our after-school programs in five clubs,” said Donnita Travis, Executive Director and Founder of By The Hand.

“We are also very grateful for the many services such as Opportunity Zones, housing assistance and other programs HUD provides benefiting many residents and businesses in the communities we serve in Cabrini-Green, Austin, Englewood and Altgeld-Gardens.”

During an afternoon meeting in Austin with Anwar Smith, Managing Director of Program Operations, and other By The Hand leaders, Secretary Carson greeted Robert, who led him on a tour of the club.

That evening, Secretary Carson addressed over 1,000 supporters of By The Hand at the Annual Spring Benefit at Navy Pier, recalling his days as a struggling youngster being raised by a single mother in public housing in Detroit. He also told how his mother’s insistence to read many books caused a turnaround in his life in eighth grade that eventually led him to become a nationally recognized neurosurgeon, and now Secretary of HUD.