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Partnership powers affordable housing

Wisconsin’s Coulee region is a beautiful place to call home. The bluffs and valleys offer a serene backdrop to vibrant communities. Unfortunately, it can be difficult for residents to find affordable, quality homes. A local nonprofit is working to change that.

Couleecap, Inc. “is literally working family by family, changing neighborhood by neighborhood, to really build up the community,” said Rose Reinert, a Couleecap client. She spoke about her experience on the Couleecap website. Reinert received housing counseling and help with a down payment. She now owns her own home.

Couleecap, a community action agency, assists residents in the Coulee region of Wisconsin, which includes Prairie Du Chien, with essentials like transportation, housing and food.

“We are meant to be an organization that has those long running, standard programs but also be really nimble if our community needs us in an emergency,” said Couleecap Executive Director Hetti Brown.

Couleecap works with local organizations, decision and policy makers to fight poverty and it works directly with low-income individuals and families. In fact, in 2021, Couleecap served more than 20,230 people in Crawford, La Crosse, Monroe and Vernon counties, helping them with things such as housing counseling, critical home repairs and down payments to buy homes.

Couleecap’s latest project, in partnership with the city of Prairie du Chien, and with support from organizations including the Alliant Energy Foundation, will provide new affordable housing options for an area already attractive with good-paying jobs.

“Together, we’re building new workforce housing that will be affordable to local residents,” Brown said.

It’s no secret that affordable housing and a vibrant community are keys to attracting job seekers and growing the local economy.

“We understand affordable workforce housing is a necessity and without an ample supply of it, the entire community suffers,” said Julie Bauer, executive director of the Alliant Energy Foundation. “We see the power in what Couleecap and the city of Prairie du Chien have already accomplished, and the potential for what lies ahead.”
"[Couleecap, Inc.] is literally working family by family, changing neighborhood by neighborhood, to really build up the community.”
Rose Reinert, Couleecap client

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