News

Member Highlight: All Home

HDC appreciates all the passion, hard work, and dedication our members devote to the affordable housing movement. No single organization could make this impact and secure this progress alone. The collaboration and connection among members is the human energy that works to ensure all people have a safe, healthy, and affordable home. We want to show our appreciation and learn more about our affordable housing community through these member highlights as each member is crucial to achieving the larger vision of this movement. This week our featured member is All Home. Thank you for all the work that you do!


  1. What excites your team about the work you are doing? 

We are excited about transforming the homeless response system to lead with racial equity and to having people with lived experience of homelessness participate comprehensively in the design, implementation and evaluation of the system. We believe this work is critical to addressing racial disparities and making homelessness rare, brief and one-time in King County.

  1. What is a favorite office anecdote?

One day, almost all members of the team showed up wearing some version of a black and white striped top: sweaters, t-shirts and even a jacket. Great minds think (and dress) alike!

  1. What upcoming projects, partnerships, and news are you looking forward to? 

We are looking forward to our campaign and work to end youth homelessness in King County by 2020! We are proud to have many partners, including Pearl Jam and A Way Home Washington (AWHWA) to create a truly comprehensive system that meets the needs of all young people in King County and eventually across Washington state.

  1. What have you been most proud of during your time as an HDC member?

We are incredibly proud of the work we have done across the system to become more data-driven. We now have public-facing dashboards that are updated quarterly and available on the All Home website to tell us how our system is performing and to help drive decisions.

Take Action: Community Reinvestment Act

WHAT

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) released an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPR) seeking public comment on reforming the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA). The CRA is a federal law design to “encourage commercial banks and savings associations to help meet the needs of borrowers in all segments of their communities, including low-and moderate income neighborhoods.” 

WHY

By weakening the CRA, could reduce banks incentives to continue doing the vitally important work of investing in housing and community development. Because of this, HDC and partners such as NACEDA are encouraging all our members to submit comment letters advocating for “the OCC to withdraw the ANPR and to engage collaboratively with stakeholders to develop a process that will amplify the impact of CRA for those it was intended to benefit, rather than lowering the bar for banks in meeting their statutory obligation.”

HOW

Submit a comment letter before November 19th to address the potential negative impact that the proposed changes could have on the communities we advocate for!

Examples:

HDC

NACEDA

NCRC

Member Highlight: YMCA Accelerator

HDC appreciates all the passion, hard work, and dedication our members devote to the affordable housing movement. No single organization could make this impact and secure this progress alone. The collaboration and connection among members is the human energy that works to ensure all people have a safe, healthy, and affordable home. We want to show our appreciation and learn more about our affordable housing community through these member highlights as each member is crucial to achieving the larger vision of this movement. This week our featured member is YMCA Accelerator. Thank you for all the work that you do!


1.  What excites your team about the work you are doing?
Accelerator Y’s team is excited by the expansion of King County’s Host Homes program, which connects young adults who are experiencing homelessness with caring adults in the community who are willing to open up there room for 6 months. The program is growing, and we’ve had many successful matches that have led to more than just stable housing. One great example is a young woman who was matched with a host who shared a love for animals. The host connected the young woman with her friend who is a Veterinarian for a job shadow opportunity. Fast forward to today, and young woman is now employed by the Vet’s office!

2.  What is a favorite office anecdote?
Every week, our team gathers around the “Huddle Board” to discuss participants that are co-enrolled in programs across Accelerator Y. This quick check-in every week provides case managers with a chance to set up a game plan with their peers to better serve young people in our community. Huddle is a great time for staff to get to know their peers and to learn from each other! And of course, bringing snacks to huddle is strongly encouraged J

3. What upcoming projects, partnerships, and news are you looking forward to?
Accelerator Y is part of the Youth Housing Demonstration Program and has added a few new innovative roles to the team to help better serve youth and young adults experiencing homelessness. This includes the expansion of crisis services to young adults, the addition of an adolescent and family therapist, housing navigators, and peer mentors to support young people who may be on the brink of homelessness and can be diverted through these services. We look forward to serving many more young people through these unique positions.

4.  What have you been most proud of during your time as an HDC member? 

We joined just this spring, but were proud to join other HDC members in supporting the effort to use hotel/motel taxes for affordable housing and youth homeless services.

Member Highlight: International Rescue Committee

HDC appreciates all the passion, hard work, and dedication our members devote to the affordable housing movement. No single organization could make this impact and secure this progress alone. The collaboration and connection among members is the human energy that works to ensure all people have a safe, healthy, and affordable home. We want to show our appreciation and learn more about our affordable housing community through these member highlights as each member is crucial to achieving the larger vision of this movement. This week our featured member is International Rescue Committee (IRC). Thank you for all the work that you do!


  1. What excites your team about the work you are doing? 

As refugee resettlement has become a more polarized issue at the federal level, we are continually inspired by how much community support there is for our work locally. In the past year, 700 volunteers contributed well over 20,000 hours helping the IRC empower our newest neighbors. Individuals, community groups, and businesses all throughout our community are stepping up to say refugees and immigrants are welcome in Washington State.

  1. What is a favorite office anecdote?

The IRC in Seattle is a close-nit team with ample team spirit. Every year, we host “IRC Way Day” to learn about the IRC’s core values of integrity, service, and accountability. It’s become a tradition for our office to also produce a homemade music video on IRC Way Day, lip syncing to popular songs with custom IRC-themed lyrics and dancing together as a team. It’s a great chance to blow off steam and have fun together!

  1. What upcoming projects, partnerships, and news are you looking forward to? 

There is much to look forward to in the year ahead. One partnership we’re particularly excited about is expanding our work with AirBnB’s Open Homes program. Through Open Homes, the IRC is able to provide free transitional housing to refugee and immigrant families who are new to the Seattle area and waiting to be placed in long-term housing. Open Homes also offers emergency shelter for refugees, immigrants, and survivors of human trafficking who are experiencing crises or a major life transitions. This is a great resource, allowing the IRC to be more responsive to the needs of vulnerable clients in urgent need of housing.

  1. What have you been most proud of during your time as an HDC member?

The IRC is honored to be an HDC member, working with a broad coalition of partners on an issue that’s so critical to our community. It’s energizing to witness the concrete results of HDC members’ advocacy and organizing efforts. One such victory we’re proud of is King County Council’s recent vote to allocate additional lodging tax dollars to fund affordable housing.

 

Member Highlight: LifeWire

LifeWire Holiday Shop

HDC appreciates all the passion, hard work, and dedication our members devote to the affordable housing movement. No single organization could make this impact and secure this progress alone. The collaboration and connection among members is the human energy that works to ensure all people have a safe, healthy, and affordable home. We want to show our appreciation and learn more about our affordable housing community through these member highlights as each member is crucial to achieving the larger vision of this movement. This week our featured member is LifeWire. Thank you for all the work that you do!


At LifeWire, we’re proud to support survivors of domestic violence (DV) with survivor-driven trauma-informed services. As a Housing Development Consortium member we’re excited about working together to bring more affordable housing to the region. We look forward to helping other members learn about the unique challenges survivors face when it comes to housing and homelessness.

Domestic violence is a leading cause of homelessness for women and children. At LifeWire, we believe that no survivor should have to choose between staying in an abusive relationship and becoming homeless.  That’s why we work with survivors to find solutions to house individuals and families—whether that means housing all types of families and individuals at  our confidential emergency shelter or providing flexible funds to change a lock or pay for first and last month’s rent.

National studies reveal a close link between alcohol, drugs, and domestic violence, but there are few housing resources for DV survivors with chemical dependency problems. Since 1998, LifeWire’s transitional housing shelter, My Friend’s Place (MFP) has served the high needs population of DV survivors who are homeless, parenting, and struggling with substance abuse. MFP is the only known successful program in Washington State that allows a woman to leave a violent home, get treatment and retain or regain custody of her children—all at the same time.

Each December we create a Holiday Shop where parents can pick toys, clothing, and household items for their families. Help us brighten the holidays for survivors of domestic violence by collecting items to fill our Holiday Shop. For more information, visit our website.

 

Member Highlight: Vision House

HDC appreciates all the passion, hard work, and dedication our members devote to the affordable housing movement. No single organization could make this impact and secure this progress alone. The collaboration and connection among members is the human energy that works to ensure all people have a safe, healthy, and affordable home. We want to show our appreciation and learn more about our affordable housing community through these member highlights as each member is crucial to achieving the larger vision of this movement. This week our featured member is Vision House. Thank you for all the work that you do!


  1. What excites your team about the work you are doing? 

Our entry team is hosting Community Collaboration forums which is very exciting in seeing the             networking develop into organizational relationships that support each other with resources.

  1. What is a favorite office anecdote?

The most recent client story that inspires me is of a mom who obtained her dream job in a remote location and the fact that staff and donors rallied together to provide her with the means to get there with her small children. It was a community effort to help a formerly homeless woman’s dreams come true.

  1. What upcoming projects, partnerships, and news are you looking forward to? 

I am looking forward to the completion of our 2nd building at Vision House Shoreline which will provide 10 additional transitional/temporary housing units as well as a licensed child care center.

  1. What have you been most proud of during your time as an HDC member?

The fact that Vision House is a learning and growing organization striving to provide MORE families experiencing homelessness the opportunity to transform their lives and achieve and maintain housing stability.

Member Highlight: Tonkin Architecture

Tonkin office dog

Mercy Magnuson Place

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HDC appreciates all the passion, hard work, and dedication our members devote to the affordable housing movement. No single organization could make this impact and secure this progress alone. The collaboration and connection among members is the human energy that works to ensure all people have a safe, healthy, and affordable home. We want to show our appreciation and learn more about our affordable housing community through these member highlights as each member is crucial to achieving the larger vision of this movement. This week our featured member is Tonkin Architecture. Thank you for all the work that you do!


  1. What excites your team about the work you are doing? 

We love making a meaningful contribution to our community through the design of new affordable housing, renovation of existing affordable housing, the re-use of older buildings, and the creation of community spaces that help struggling people thrive within the community.

  1. What is a favorite office anecdote?

Back in the 1980s we helped transform Interlake Elementary School into Wallingford Center Our team was so enamored by the interior doors from the old school that we actually acquired the ones that couldn’t be reused and repurposed them at the Tonkin office. We use them as divider walls to break up the large open space into smaller “rooms”. Visitors often comment on them; we enjoy explaining their origin and transformation to anyone who asks. Although our team recently moved from Pioneer Square to Belltown, we love our old doors so much that we still use them in our new office.

  1. What upcoming projects, partnerships, and news are you looking forward to? 

We have been working on the reuse of the Sand Point Naval Air Station Barracks (Building 9) with Mercy Housing Northwest for about four years. The transformation of Building 9 into Mercy Magnuson Place will finally be complete next year. We are very proud and excited to have helped turn this historic building, which sat empty for twenty years, into new affordable housing for 148 families!

We are also looking forward to the completion of LIHI’s June Leonard Place in Renton early next year, which will provide 48 new apartments to formerly homeless families and veterans.

  1. What have you been most proud of during your time as an HDC member?

We are proud to have assisted with the Housing and Aging Forum held in November 2016. However, we are most proud of our contribution towards creating and maintaining affordable housing, especially with the current housing climate in our region. We are always delighted to see happy tenants moving into one of the newly constructed or renovated facilities we designed, and are inspired by the hope that having an affordable home brings to them.

Member Highlight: Aspect Consulting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HDC appreciates all the passion, hard work, and dedication our members devote to the affordable housing movement. No single organization could make this impact and secure this progress alone. The collaboration and connection among members is the human energy that works to ensure all people have a safe, healthy, and affordable home. We want to show our appreciation and learn more about our affordable housing community through these member highlights as each member is crucial to achieving the larger vision of this movement. This week our featured member is Aspect Consulting. Thank you for all the work that you do!


What excites your team about the work you are doing?

Aspect is a 100+-person, Northwest-based environmental science and engineering company with local roots. We know that being embedded in the communities that we serve is critical to our success. We look to use our technical skills to benefit the environment, our clients, and our community. Often the only sites left to develop are perceived as “not available” to the affordable housing community because the costs to get to shovel ready are too high. Unable to compete against the deeper pockets of private developers, non-profit housing developers pass on blighted sites. Why? The perception is that they are too risky, too costly, and too difficult to get to the finish line.

Through experience and creativity, the Aspect team has paved a new way to reduce environmental risk, cost and difficulties of buying and redeveloping contaminated property. We are excited about providing new opportunities to the housing development community who want to recycle contaminated land into better uses. To us at Aspect, this means helping client buy, clean up, and build affordable housing with integrated local businesses where the community can walk to transit, a coffee shop, or a local tailor. Success is helping clients obtain state funding for the cleanup and development of these sites.

What is a favorite office anecdote?

Around the Aspect office, we approach affordable housing projects with a “what does our community need?” mindset. Then we formulate plans where earth + water scientists and engineers can collaborate with planning and design teams trying to solve community problems. In our minds, all projects start with the earth – and if the earth isn’t satisfied at the end of a project, then we aren’t either. The great projects result in multiple “wins.” This is why affordable housing projects on cleaned-up land are so special – the earth is improved, property is recycled, the community gets new homes and businesses, and it’s an equitable solution.

What upcoming projects, partnerships, and news are you looking forward to?

Two projects that we’ve been working on with Mt. Baker Housing Association.

1) The Gateway Maddux North and Maddux South project at MLK Jr S and S McClellan; and

2) The Grand Street Commons mixed use project in partnership with Lake Union Partners at Rainier Ave S and S Grand St.

These two projects are literally breaking new ground in the affordable housing marketplace. Very complex, contaminated property that has sat fallow at prime transit hubs will now become new community gateways, hubs, centers.

Through Aspect’s understanding of what it takes to fund a cleanup project, we’ve been able to leverage relationships and community involvement expertise so that the Gateway and Grand Street Commons projects benefit through grants, insurance recovery, and liable party pursuit dollars. These “dollars” will be used to help defray significant environmental assessment and cleanup costs that would have prevented any other property acquisition and redevelopment from moving forward.

Learn more about our affordable housing work here: www.aspectconsulting.com/affordablehousing

What have you been most proud of during your time as an HDC member?

At Aspect we are most proud when a geologist or engineer can sit at a table with someone that we normally wouldn’t meet were it not for our HDC connection – and have a discussion about solving critical neighborhood issues. We’ve found that we are at our best when we put on our community cape first

Member Highlight: Multi-Service Center

 

HDC appreciates all the passion, hard work, and dedication our members devote to the affordable housing movement. No single organization could make this impact and secure this progress alone. The collaboration and connection among members is the human energy that works to ensure all people have a safe, healthy, and affordable home. We want to show our appreciation and learn more about our affordable housing community through these member highlights as each member is crucial to achieving the larger vision of this movement. This week our featured member is Multi-Service Center. Thank you for all the work that you do!


What excites your team about the work you are doing?

There is a tremendous need for affordable housing in the South King and Pierce county regions that we serve, and we have heard consistently from hundreds of community members and stakeholders that the lack of affordable housing is a top contributor to poverty in our communities. Having a safe, secure, affordable home transforms lives and allows individuals and families to succeed and communities thrive. MSC is excited and grateful to have the opportunity to help meet the need for affordable housing in our communities so that individual community members and communities themselves can fulfill their potential.

What upcoming projects, partnerships, and news are you looking forward to?

We are currently renovating and preserving an affordable housing property in Tacoma as well as a project based Section 8 senior affordable housing property in Gig Harbor.  We also have other projects in early stages of the pipeline, such as workforce housing project in South King County and a service enriched Veterans Housing project in Tacoma. In order to keep up with our growth and add capacity in affordable housing development, we recently hired Amanda Santo for a newly created position of Director of Affordable Housing Development and Operations for MSC. Amanda was previously the Employment and Education Department Director for MSC.

What have you been most proud of during your time as an HDC member? 

MSC has been incredibly  proud to partner with HDC and to work with so many inspiring leaders and organizations within affordable housing. Together as a consortium, we have successfully advocated for legislation that has helped to improve the lives of low-income community members and increase access to high quality affordable housing. We have also raised the visibility of affordable housing needs and best practices in our region.

Member Highlight: Beacon Development Group


HDC appreciates all the passion, hard work, and dedication our members devote to the affordable housing movement. No single organization could make this impact and secure this progress alone. The collaboration and connection among members is the human energy that works to ensure all people have a safe, healthy, and affordable home. We want to show our appreciation and learn more about our affordable housing community through these member highlights as each member is crucial to achieving the larger vision of this movement. This week our featured member is Beacon Development Group. Thank you for all the work that you do!


What excites your team about the work you are doing?

The positive impact we are making by helping to provide housing stability to people with limited resources is incredibly exciting.  We are fortunate to have our WA office located at one of our development consulting projects, Plaza Roberto Maestas. Coming to work every day to a multicultural community where we see children playing and people gathering in the plaza is a daily dose of excitement. Attending grand openings where we can see residents smiling is a reminder of why our work is so important.

What is a favorite office anecdote?

For 18 years our office had a strict no dog policy.  This spring while a colleague was coming in to the office he found a lost dog wandering the neighborhood.  He brought the dog upstairs while he tried to track down the owner.  In the meantime, there was a 30 minute doggie love fest as staff chased, fetched, scratched, and played with that dog.  There were some sighs when the owner came to re-claim the dog, but the smiles and morale boost lasted all day.  So now after 18 years, we are considering joining the dog-friendly workplace movement in Seattle.

What upcoming projects, partnerships, and news are you looking forward to?

We are privileged to be working on projects that represent diverse cultures with rich heritages. Filipino Community Village, Ethiopian Community Services, and Chief Seattle Club all have beautiful and unique cultures that have been exciting for us to learn about.  Creating housing that reflects the shared stories of cultures and creating community spaces in which traditions can be carried on for generations is something we are honored to be a part of.

What have you been most proud of during your time as an HDC member?

Beacon and HDC have grown together over the last few decades.  We have jointly weathered dramatic changes in the economic and political climate and both tried to lead and respond to the evolving affordable housing industry.  The fact that we are both still standing after this many years is something we can both be proud of.