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Permanent housing allows roots to take hold, and bolsters individual, familial and communal strength. Sustained healthy expectations of quality permanent housing encourages independence, and forges connections to neighborhood services, school and religious institutions. Broadway Housing taps the virtues of a permanent community in sustaining a proactive housing approach that builds stability and productivity among the neediest of our community members.
Broadway Housing’s approach to housing is distinguished by several factors:
- While most supportive housing organizations segregate their facilities by demographic, BHC’s tenancy is integrated, including the healthy and disabled, the young and elderly, the employed and dependent. Residents include those with mental disabilities, HIV/AIDS and other chronic health conditions and many in recovery from addiction. It is our experience that integrated communities provide strong networks for those in need.
- Since its inception, Broadway Housing has partnered with community organizations to provide comprehensive support services to all tenants. Services include medical and mental health care, vocational training and job placement, substance abuse treatment, benefits counseling and training and assistance with independent living skills. .
- Our model is also premised on a belief that tenants should be responsible for the quality and character of their own housing. At each site, Broadway Housing relies on a front desk management system where tenants are employed on a part-time, paid basis to provide around-the-clock coverage of the buildings and address the needs of fellow tenants. Nearly one quarter of our tenants participate in this management system. In addition to these part-time workers, Broadway Housing currently employs a total of 10 current and former tenants on a full-time basis, including the positions of assistant property manager (1), teacher’s assistant (1), front desk supervisor (1) and front desk coordinators (6) and maintenance (1). This empowering engagement of tenants has become a cornerstone of Broadway Housing’s success.
- Broadway Housing seeks to actively engage and support the neighborhoods where it works, extending its resources to the community and encouraging tenants to become full participants in community life.
The model provided by Broadway Housing has been a catalyst for significant, on going public support of supportive housing for homeless signal adults. With the opening of Dorothy Day Apartments, Broadway Housing broadened its focus and applicability of the model to include children and families. Over the past decade, the homeless population has included an ever increasing percentage of families with children, yet family supportive housing is still a new concept with few examples across the country. Our experience at Dorothy Day Apartments has shown that providing struggling families with stabile housing dramatically increases their quality of life and creates a foundation from which to grow. Parents are supported to increase their education and employability. Children have the opportunity to consistently attend school and live without the stress of being homeless or inadequately housed. Our new initiative in Sugar Hill will allow us to expand the number of families we serve.
The innovative standard achieved at Dorothy Day Apartments, as well as the investment from every level of government, annually attracts hundreds of human service professionals and public officials from across the United States to learn from the beautiful, simple solution the building represents. International guests from Japan, Australia, Great Britain, The Netherlands, and France also visit due to the growth of homelessness among families in their countries.