Originally from Iraq, Issa and his wife and two children fled his home country in 2008 when the conflict around him became too much for his family to endure. “Like any refugee, you’re not wanting to leave your home. But you must move on when it gets too hard,” Issa says with his wife and children beside him.
Since completing his IDA savings in October 2012, his family has already seen a number of fortunate developments arise.
Issa maintains a monthly budget thanks to his financial literacy training, and has found hundreds of dollars in monthly savings since purchasing a townhouse in Everett, which has ended up being more cost-efficient than the rental apartment his family previously lived in. In addition, his wife Shirook is in the process of becoming a licensed family home childcare provider, and is on a clear path to licensure now that they no longer live in an above-ground apartment complex. “The children,” Issa says while laughing, “are just happy to have more space.”
Without hearing his story, you might mistake Issa and his family for any of the other workaday Americans calling this pristine block of townhomes in Everett home. The children seem happy and at peace in their new home, having water fights in the yard and taking walks with their parents to a nearby park in the summer. “Right now this place makes sense for us. We were happy in our apartment, but we actually love it here,” Issa says, smiling.