The one universal ingredient that I repeatedly encounter in each new housing context is the lack of careful and/or creative attention to how to recruit, hire, train, support, and manage the property manager, especially in relation to other aspects of the affordable housing development process. The vast majority of the innovation in our affordable housing industry is devoted to either advocating for programs and funding or securing sites, design, public approval, permitting, and financing.
Read Frankie's blog post on this topic here.
In the fall of 2014, we met Marshall Pollard at a Grassroots Grantmakers Convening in Cleveland, Ohio. He was on an urgent search for community change strategies to apply back home in Birmingham, Alabama, in his work with the Ed Foundation.
We recently shared some reflections regarding mixed income housing in Shelterforce Magazine's blog called Rooflines. Check out the blog post out here, and send us any reactions or ideas bubbling up for you.
Jayne Park, the Executive Director of Impact Silver Spring, recently shared with me several visual aides they've developed to help others understand and hold on to the concept of community network building. They also have a brief "white board" video. We wanted to share these with others. If you use them, please note Impact Silver Spring as the source!
Trusted Space Partners is excited to share this paper detailing our recent ground-breaking work in partnership with CPDC, an innovative housing owner in the Washington DC region. The paper details a unique and effective new application of community network building as both a theory of change, as well a form and set of practices, all within one large, mixed income housing community.
Happy New Year from Trusted Space Partners! We want to give you a brief update on our current work and our offers for the new year (a description is below or link here for a pdf version). We're continuing to provide consulting around community development and community building strategies where we are needed, and we have been concentrating some of our efforts working with large affordable housing development companies and their properties in Chicago, Detroit, Miami, DC, Bostons etc and learning a lot about this work in that context. It's challenging but really interesting.
Check out this great 2 Minute Video created for Trusted Space and our Qniversity project in Lawrence MA. The Video was created by Felix Gomez, a young and creative new film maker at Vessel Visions Productions in Lawrence MA.
In our work to spark new local networks of mutual support and collaborative action, we have discovered that the difference between failure and success often comes down to some simple, but highly nuanced behaviors or steps. We try to help community teams – especially the key organizer - understand these nuances. But sparking a power sharing relationship with residents is harder than it looks, especially in the ramping up moments of building a new network.
Wisdom is Everywhere! And the quest of Qniversity in Lawrence MA is to bring all that good wisdom out so it can be well shared! And since February 2014 - when Qniversity opened its doors in a renovated Mill building on the Merrimack River - over 500 residents have come together to share passions, skills, ideas, advice and yes, wisdom with each other. And this past Labor Day yet a new dimension to the Q Campaign and Qniversity revealed itself: The Q-Mobile, a restored vintage 1960's Shasta Camper that has been transformed into a mobile Kitchen Table and Living Room.
We've been privileged to work deeply in the Edgewood Terrace community in Washington DC this past year with a dedicated team of residents and staff. Similar to many other long time affordable housing communities, we discovered a culture where people rarely make eye contact when passing a stranger, residents live on the same hallway for years and rarely speak or acknowledge each other, and few of the 2,000+ residents are connected to the active civic life in the larger neighborhood surrounding the complex.
Trusted Space Partners is a team of experienced community developers and designers who are supporting collaborative community change initiatives all over the United States.