Launch of Roofs to Roots and Release of Housing & Transportation Affordability Study


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The complete presentation from the launch of Roofs to Roots, the initiative through which the Coalition to End Homelessness will implement the remaining years of the Vision to End Homelessness. Included the official release of the Housing & Transportation Affordability Report, available for download at

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  • Research and story gathering -- We know data is critical in changing the conversation about homelessness. THANK YOU to everyone here who has shared their data. We’ll continue to gather community data, collect stories about your work and success, and report on it in ways that build community awareness and support. Listening and learning -- If we want to open doors to housing, we have to open doors within our own homeless system. Many of the barriers you face are likely experienced by other organizations within the system. Through specialized support and resources, the Coalition will enhance connections and conversations, so you have more tools to be part of ending homelessness. Planning and advocacy – With stronger data and more connected partners, we can create momentum needed to guide planning and funding efforts toward long-term change. Your organization will continue to play a role in how decisions are made about the homeless system, and we will engage more community leaders to support your work and spark conversations outside the system.
  • Data was developed by household size and income level – many more breakdowns and findings are available in the full report.
  • More details about the report and these tips are available in the service provider section of the website
  • Launch of Roofs to Roots and Release of Housing & Transportation Affordability Study

    1. 2. <ul><li>Framing the change </li></ul><ul><li>Sharing our path forward </li></ul><ul><li>Putting new data to work </li></ul><ul><li>Next steps </li></ul>AGENDA
    2. 3. Framing the change <ul><li>“ It is not enough to ‘tweak’ the homeless system… we must choose a new way forward: a vision that encompasses a change in attitude, a change in assumptions, a change in vocabulary, a change of heart, a change in service delivery and a change in systems.” </li></ul><ul><li>From the Vision to End Homelessness </li></ul>
    3. 4. Framing the change
    4. 5. Framing the change: Are we there yet?
    5. 6. Framing the change: Are we there yet? <ul><li>Accomplishments include: </li></ul><ul><li>Expanded central intake and developed Housing Resource Specialist model </li></ul><ul><li>Raised or re-aligned $5.3 million to support new system operations, such as homeless prevention </li></ul><ul><li>15% reduction in number of people entering the system as homeless in 2009 </li></ul><ul><li>Increase in people who prevented homelessness </li></ul>
    6. 7. Framing the change: Are we there yet?
    7. 9. Sharing the path forward <ul><li>Even in the midst of progress, there have been critical obstacles to consider: </li></ul><ul><li>Persistent misinformation about homelessness </li></ul><ul><li>A lack of accessible and compelling tools </li></ul><ul><li>An unclear call to action </li></ul>
    8. 10. Sharing the path forward <ul><li>With these challenges in mind, we began a communications planning process in 2009 that: </li></ul><ul><li>Engaged service providers, community members, and others </li></ul><ul><li>Explored desired communications goals, target audiences, and relevant messages </li></ul><ul><li>Examined the messages and tools of other similar organizations around the country </li></ul>
    9. 11. Sharing the path forward <ul><li>Through this process, we determined: </li></ul><ul><li>Service providers are a primary audience. </li></ul><ul><li>We want to humanize homelessness… but avoid worn-out perceptions and stereotypes. </li></ul><ul><li>We need to communicate our vision of change and our approach for achieving it. </li></ul><ul><li>Our work is driven by a sense of charity and justice… we must recognize this. </li></ul>
    10. 12. Sharing the path forward
    11. 13. Sharing the path forward <ul><li>Through Roofs to Roots, we will focus on: </li></ul><ul><li>Research and story gathering </li></ul><ul><li>Listening and learning </li></ul><ul><li>Planning and advocacy </li></ul><ul><li>The good news: Roofs to Roots will bring you new tools, programs, and resources. </li></ul>
    12. 14. Sharing the path forward <ul><li>Website and e-newsletter </li></ul>
    13. 15. Sharing the path forward <ul><li>Social media </li></ul>
    14. 16. Sharing the path forward <ul><li>Framework Groups, a peer-to-peer listening and learning series focused on topics such as: </li></ul><ul><li>The inner workings of the homeless system </li></ul><ul><li>Breaking down barriers within the homeless system </li></ul><ul><li>Using the Housing First approach </li></ul><ul><li>Resources for implementing the Vision </li></ul><ul><li>Ways to evaluate your success </li></ul>
    15. 18. Putting new data to work <ul><li>To communicate and advocate effectively, there were key questions to answer: </li></ul><ul><li>How many people lack affordable housing? </li></ul><ul><li>To what extent are households “doubled up” (living with family or friends)? </li></ul><ul><li>What impact do transportation costs have on housing? </li></ul>
    16. 19. Putting new data to work <ul><li>To answer these questions, we initiated two research projects that comprise the study: </li></ul><ul><li>Affordable Housing Supply and Demand Analysis, from the Community Research Institute </li></ul><ul><li>Housing + Transportation Affordability in West Michigan, from the Center for Neighborhood Technology </li></ul>
    17. 20. Putting new data to work <ul><li>Key findings </li></ul><ul><li>With housing and transportation costs combined, 84,000 people live in unaffordable areas throughout West Michigan. </li></ul><ul><li>In Kent County, over 4,600 households are living doubled up. </li></ul><ul><li>In Grand Rapids, 48% of four-person households making $62,100 or less (100% AMI) lack affordable housing. </li></ul>
    18. 21. Putting new data to work <ul><li>In addition to the findings, the Housing & Transportation Study includes: </li></ul><ul><li>Reasons for studying affordability </li></ul><ul><li>Context about the choices households make that affect their ability to afford housing </li></ul><ul><li>Background on how the system works </li></ul><ul><li>Glossary of common terms </li></ul><ul><li>Recommendations for programs, practices, planning, and policies </li></ul>
    19. 22. Putting new data to work <ul><li>Using the study </li></ul><ul><li>Host a lunch-and-learn with staff. </li></ul><ul><li>Share it with your board. </li></ul><ul><li>Use it in your grant writing. </li></ul><ul><li>Leave copies in your break room or reception area. </li></ul><ul><li>Post in on your website, in your newsletter, and on social media. </li></ul>
    20. 24. Next steps <ul><li>What you can do </li></ul><ul><li>Complete the form </li></ul><ul><li>Read and share the report </li></ul><ul><li>Visit the website </li></ul><ul><li>Follow us on Twitter and/or Facebook </li></ul><ul><li>Subscribe to the e-newsletter </li></ul><ul><li>Sign up for a Framework Group </li></ul>
    21. 25. Next steps <ul><li>What the Coalition will be doing </li></ul><ul><li>Sharing the Housing & Transportation Affordability Study with the community </li></ul><ul><li>Sending service provider e-newsletter in September </li></ul><ul><li>Preparing for the first Framework Group in October </li></ul><ul><li>Planning an advocacy training for January </li></ul><ul><li>Building on our new tools, with more web content and resources via social media </li></ul>
    22. 26. Thank you! <ul><li>A huge thank you to the entities that financially support our work and the process we have undertaken as a community: </li></ul><ul><li>City of Grand Rapids </li></ul><ul><li>County of Kent </li></ul><ul><li>Kent County Department of Human Services </li></ul><ul><li>Network 180 </li></ul><ul><li>Michigan State Housing Development Authority </li></ul><ul><li>U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development </li></ul><ul><li>Dyer Ives Foundation </li></ul><ul><li>Grand Rapids Community Foundation </li></ul><ul><li>Steelcase Foundation </li></ul><ul><li>Heart of West Michigan United Way </li></ul><ul><li>Countrywide Foreclosure Resettlement Funds </li></ul><ul><li>Essential Needs Task Force </li></ul><ul><li>Community Rebuilders </li></ul><ul><li>The Salvation Army Booth Family Services </li></ul><ul><li>Wines for Humanity </li></ul><ul><li>Individual donors and contributors </li></ul>