In honor of Veterans Day this year, we are highlighting Perry Point Veterans Village, an extraordinary supportive housing community for homeless vets created by HELP USA in tandem with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, NEF and many other dedicated partners. The development was 10 years in the making and involved a veritable high-wire act of aligning bureaucracies and funding sources and overcoming political opposition. The result is worth the struggle: 75 safe, affordable homes for veterans who'd been surviving on the streets and now have a bona fide new lease on life.
As lawmakers in Providence confront a crisis in the state’s school system, LISC Rhode Island ED Jeanne Cola weighs in with an appeal to consider the comprehensive factors that contribute to students’ struggles, or successes—particularly housing. “As we look at bold ways to improve dismal test scores and address high absenteeism…now is the time to take a holistic approach and provide a consistent funding mechanism to add, or restore, stable and secure housing for Rhode Island residents,” she writes in an op-ed for The Providence Journal.
Thanks to a generous—and momentous—commitment of $150 million from Facebook, the innovative Bay’s Future Fund has nearly reached its $500 million goal in less than one year since its launch. Now, LISC will help put these dollars to work promoting affordable housing development in the San Francisco Bay Area.
We need to look at the impact of investing in rural community development on its own terms, argues Suzanne Anarde, outgoing vice president and director of Rural LISC in an essay for Shelterforce. Projects may not touch the numbers of people or generate the returns of urban investments, but their effects are every bit as important, and ripple far and wide through the small, intricately connected networks of rural life.
This month, LISC and Cornell University will co-sponsor a conference on comprehensive approaches to turning vacant and “zombie” homes into community assets—and upending the conditions that create them in the first place. Helene Caloir, director of LISC’s $75 million New York State Housing Stabilization Fund, describes how this work is part and parcel of the broad challenges of revitalizing neighborhoods, dismantling racial inequity and sparking economic mobility.