By Rachel Smith, executive assistant

An affordable housing development for local farmworkers and their families in Woodland recently received the World Habitat Award, one of only two awards United Nations-Habitat gives annually.

The Sacramento-based nonprofit, Mutual Housing California, was honored with the award for the Spring Lake housing development for many reasons. Spring Lake is the first 100 percent Zero-Net Energy housing project in the country. It focuses on providing “green living” to agricultural workers and their families, an amenity that is usually too expensive for low-income earners. Additionally, the property offers its residents training to improve their confidence and skillsets. Classes for leadership, parenting and financial literacy are offered to the residents free of charge.

Rachel Iskow, the organization’s outgoing CEO, noted that the award gives them national recognition for the innovative project. Iskow hopes it will inspire more projects like Spring Lake to gain momentum in other parts of the country.

“I also hope it’s a model for other developers, especially the sustainable aspect,” Iskow told the Sacramento Business Journal.


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