Meet on the Music Hall side of Washington Park at 5:30
For the first time, in 2020, we did not give any awards because of our inability, due to the pandemic, to gather all our folks together in one location to celebrate. This year, while we still cannot safely gather a few hundred of us in one space, we will have a virtual Trivia Night and Awards Ceremony and honor these recipients there. We are thankful to be able to share who the recipients of our 2021 awards are.
- buddy gray Lifetime Achievement Award: Bob Moore, who we lost earlier this year. To read more about Bob, click here.
- Service Provider Lifetime Achievement Award: Gwendolyn Green of Bethany House
- Julie Martin Service Provider of the Year:
- Bethany House Services
- Cincinnati Health Network
- City Gospel Mission Homeless Services Department
- Greater Cincinnati Behavioral Health Services PATH Team
- Interfaith Hospitality Network of Greater Cincinnati
- Lighthouse Youth and Family Services Homeless Youth Services Department
- Mary Magdalen House
- Our Daily Bread
- Prince of Peace Lutheran Church and Talbert House Housing Department
- St. Francis Seraph Ministries Dining Room
- The Salvation Army Greater Cincinnati Area Family Shelter
- YWCA Greater Cincinnati Domestic Violence Shelter
- Young Activist of the Year: Rico Blackman Jr. of Black Power Initiative
- Streetvibes Distributor of the Year: Kenneth Bussell
Why are 13 groups listed as Julie Martin Service Provider of the Year? The list could be longer. So many of our Member Organizations have worked so hard to keep their services going through the pandemic. With this list of 13, we are focusing on the direct service agencies whose actions have played a major role in preventing the widespread outbreaks that have been seen in other parts of the country among people in shelter and outdoors.
When the pandemic erupted, we had to quickly decide what to do to prevent deadly outbreaks in our congregant shelters and among people living outdoors. We gathered our Member-Organizations and built and implemented strategy together. Whether it was quickly moving 400 people from congregant shelter into hotels, serving meals to 200% more people and providing meals to people now in hotels, figuring out how to provide hot showers safely, doing street outreach when so many were staying home, fighting to get COVID-19 tests, changing the facility setups to make distancing more possible, running shelter in a hotel, when you have never done that before or running a shelter for the first time period,these organization continually stepped up. We kept asking these folks to do more work than they had staff or budgets for, and in many instances with little guarantee of needed funding or knowledge of how long it would be, and they all kept saying “Yes”. So far, in our City and County we have not suffered the major life-ending outbreaks among people experiencing homelessness that other localities have. This is because we have strategically worked together and the staff at these agencies decided to act based on the importance of human life and morality over all else.
Coalition Board Member Barry Klein tells a story about Bob Moore and buddy gray at the 2021 Trivia Night and Awards Ceremony
In addition to our robust Speakers’ Bureau and Walking Tours, we offer 2-hour online trainings in the following areas (at the cost of $120 per 2 hour session.) Because each training is virtual, you can have up to 100 participants in your training, all at the same cost of $120 for the session.
Training is a great way for organizations, businesses, classrooms, and individuals to learn more about what role you play in eradicating homelessness. Note: there’s no need to take them in order, while they build on the content from the Speakers and Tours, each training stands on its own. Sign up today!
Homelessness 101 covers the basics of homelessness, in terms of the causes and responses, which includes the voices of people who have experienced homelessness. This interactive training gives participants an insight into the system of homelessness in Cincinnati and beyond. We cover many topics, including:
* The Causes of Homelessness
* Legal Protections and Criminalization
* How to End Homelessness
* Types of Homelessness
* Statistics and Stereotypes
* Barriers and Health Issues
* COVID19 Responses
* …and More!
Affordable Housing 201
The lack of affordable housing has contributed greatly to the housing crisis in America. Understanding the ways in which affordability is measured is essential to create, maintain, and sustain affordable housing across the country.
This training uses data from Cincinnati and Hamilton County, Ohio to break down the meaning of affordable housing into sections, including Safe and Affordable Housing, Area Median Income (AMI), and Household Affordability.
Participants will be able to:
* Define affordability at 30% of income, including utilities
* Understand fair market rent
* See how the lack of affordable housing may impact a family
* Identify affordability for groups within Cincinnati, including by Race
* Understand limitations of AMI calculations
* Create a family budget while including housing affordability
Affordable Housing 201 is for anyone, event outside of Cincinnati, who wants to learn more about housing affordability. All are welcome!
Housing Protections 301
This training is designed to shed light on the rights and responsibilities of tenants and landlords while keeping an eye on displacement.
Participants will be able to:
* Identify a lack of housing protections
* Discern between Direct and Indirect Gentrification
* Know how to do research on potential landlords
The Housing Protections 301 Virtual Training is for anyone who wants to learn more about housing protections. All are welcome!
Housing Production 401
This training is designed to help people interested in learning more about the creation of affordable housing. It includes specific tools that can be used to create and maintain safe, affordable housing. We will also help participants understand basics about the economics of becoming a landlord.
Participants will be able to:
* Access the Multiple Listing Service
* Understand city regulations
* Find programs and services that enable them to become a landlord without displacing residents
* Create a landlord budget
* Determine if a property is a good investment
* ..and more!
All are welcome!
We are available for trainings at any time of the week or weekend. Just fill out the google form and we will contact you regarding availability. We provide the Zoom link to share with your group, school, or organization. Sign up today!
Join us for our Annual Fundraiser with special guest host, Key Beck!
This year, we are hosting Trivia Night and will honor those who were dedicated to serving our agencies and our missions in 2021.
Register using the following link: https://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/5275618
For information regarding Award Nominations: https://mailchi.mp/cincihomeless/annual-fundraiser-trivia-night-and-awards-ceremony?e=5335771959
Additional details will be provided upon registration.
This November, engage with us as we highlight the resilience of the Over-the-Rhine People’s Movement, the work of the Homeless Coalition and our member organizations, and the power of people experiencing homelessness.
Please grab your tickets and put these events on your calendar so that you can be a part of the movement to eradicate homelessness. Hear the voices of people experiencing homelessness, walk historical pathways in tours, and earn your certificate by completing the Ambassador program – you can do it all in November for Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Month.
Virtual Speaker’s Bureau
- Willa Jones, 11/17 7pm
- Samuel Jackson, 11/18 7pm
- Melissa Mosby, 11/20 7pm
- Homelessness 101, 11/3 10am
- Affordable Housing 201, 11/10 10am
- Housing Protections 301, 11/17 10am
- Housing Production 401, 11/24 10am
In-Person Walking Tours Tours (Masked, Small Group, Limited Tickets)
- Over-the-Rhine People’s Movement Walking Tour, 11/6 & 11/27 10am-12 noon*
- The People’s Movement TODAY Walking Tour, 11/14 1-3pm
Tickets are available now at Brown Paper Tickets: https://www.brownpapertickets.com/profile/244215
Please share! All are welcome, but adult themes are presented throughout, so we suggest 13 years old as the minimum age, but all are welcome!
At midnight on Saturday, the federal eviction moratorium ended, threatening the lives of millions of Americans, including many here in Cincinnati. Homelessness will be accelerated as families will be forced from their homes, worsening the housing crisis. The eviction moratorium was issued to help protect people who had lost income due to COVID19 only, so evictions continued through the pandemic, even accelerating in some areas in Ohio. While the inaction of the federal government to extend the moratorium will have disastrous effects for families in Cincinnati, especially Black families, it also signals the end of COVID19 federal housing protections; however, aid is still available at https://513relief.org/.
In addition to ensuring families who lost income due to COVID19 could stay in their homes, the moratorium encouraged landlords and tenants to work together to seek out federal aid for housing costs. Unfortunately, with the expiration of the moratorium, federal aid earmarked for Cincinnati may go unspent. This is a great loss of value, wealth, and potential for Cincinnati.
Essentially, with the moratorium expired, the loss of income from COVID19 will no longer be a valid defence in eviction court. While claims of a worker shortage seem to contradict the experience of people looking for work, without a livable wage, minimum wage earners, mostly in their 30’s with children, are unable to afford a 2-bedroom apartment while working full time. Evictions are more likely to be filed on Black residents due to racism and systemic housing barriers presented to Black Cincinnatians – the same barriers that privileged white Cincinnatians for generations. Most importantly, since the pandemic hit Black families the hardest, economically and otherwise, allowing the moratorium to expire will cause immeasurable pain and suffering in Black communities by accelerating displacement and increasing homelessness. Whether a family is forced to double-up, couch surf, seek shelter, or live in dangerous places, homelessness has dire consequences for children in school, health and safety, and community stability. Eviction creates additional barriers, as records follow people throughout their lifetime, making housing even more difficult to obtain. Eviction pushes people further into poverty, and without strong tenant protections, our community is at risk.
We urge all of our elected officials to strengthen tenant protections by extending the eviction moratorium, and by creating Pay-to-Stay protections, sealing eviction records, and ensuring just-cause eviction policies, among other tenant protections. Housing protections, in addition to livable wages and affordable housing, are how we can eradicate homelessness in Cincinnati.
Housing is a human right. Even before the pandemic hit, we were in the midst of a housing crisis, where half of all of the Black families in Hamilton County were housing cost burdened, spending more than 30% of their income on housing. COVID19 has accelerated the disparity between Black and white Cincinnatians, and the eviction moratorium expiration will have long-lasting effects on our community. For far too long, our member organizations have been providing life-saving services, but now it is time for our elected officials to fully support the affordable housing trust fund and require property-owners to respect the rights of all of our neighbors.
If you’d like to learn more about the housing crisis and homelessness, please engage in our public education program with a Speaker, Tour, or Training, subscribe to our email lists on our webpage, and pick up a Streetvibes newspaper from a community distributor. Join the Homeless Coalition as an individual or organization today.
|Affordable Housing Movement Will Continue March Until We Reach Success |
For Immediate Release: May 4, 2021
From: Cincinnati Action for Housing Now
|Today, we have taken big steps forward on our journey to housing justice. While we lost at the polls, we know we will eventually win. Our effort is not a marketing plan, run by a hired public relations firm. We are a movement of people who know every person in this city needs access to a home they can afford. Unlike a glossy marketing plan, a movement doesn’t end until we get where we need to be. |
Cincinnati Action for Housing Now is proud our campaign for Issue 3 put our need for affordable housing at the top of community conversation. Every candidate in the mayoral primary has said they believe we need to fund affordable housing development. Those who opposed us, said repeatedly they support affordable housing and will join us in our work to get it funded. City council candidates will have to choose if they stand with our movement to invest significant public city funds into affordable housing development every year.
This positive talk about building affordable housing is good and is hard fought progress. But we will stay focused on action. Today is not the end of any road. Our voices are growing louder and our determination stronger. We will gather with our many people, our member organizations and our powerful endorsers. We will reach out to labor unions and other concerned organizations and invite them to join the affordable housing movement. We will evaluate our strategy, form next steps and continue pushing forward. We remain convinced that it is within the People of this city where the strength lies to finally make affordable housing development a significantly funded priority.
We will not slow down. There simply is not enough time and people are too important to slow down.
We cannot slow down because thousands of Cincinnati kids need a safe place to call home, seniors need to be able to stay in their neighborhoods, families need to not have to worry about paying the rent. Thousands of Cincinnatians agree. They passionately volunteered during a pandemic to make affordable housing a priority. We collected 9,541 signatures, in a time with no large community gatherings. We passed out flyers, knocked on doors, made phone calls, did interviews, wrote editorials, designed social media, text messaged our friends, organized spreadsheets, delivered yard signs and voted!
To all who tirelessly volunteered with Cincinnati Action for Housing Now to get Issue 3 on the ballot, we thank you and ask that you stay in the family. To our powerful endorsers, we thank you for being in solidarity. To those who voted yes on Issue 3, we thank you, and hope you will choose to be involved in the next steps. You can stay connected through www.actionforhousingnow.com as well as on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and especially on our street corners, in our parks, on our stoops and in all of our neighborhoods. We are a movement of people.
The time will come soon, when as a City, we will decide to invest significantly in affordable housing. It’s not today, but it is just around the corner.
|For Immediate Release: February 23, 2021|
From: Greater Cincinnati Homeless Coalition (GCHC), Metropolitan Area Religious Coalition of Cincinnati (MARCC), Affordable Housing Advocates (AHA) Contact: Josh Spring (GCHC): email@example.com; 513-716-7455, Margaret Fox (MARCC): firstname.lastname@example.org; 609-439-1881 John Schrider (AHA): email@example.com; 513-720-3219 www.actionforhousingnow.com
|Today, the Hamilton County Board of Elections confirmed we collected enough valid petition signatures so that on May 4, Cincinnatians will have the opportunity to vote to invest $50 million of our money every year into stable housing tens of thousands of us need and can afford. In a time of uncertainty, distancing and struggle, it speaks volumes that more than 200 volunteers collected signatures from over 9,500 people, many of whom, with no public gatherings, had to make a way to sign. Cincinnati Action for Housing Now is grateful to the thousands of Cincinnatians that have pushed the issue of affordable housing this far. Our campaign has been, and will continue to be, grassroots and community driven. |
Passage of this charter amendment will ensure $50 million city dollars is invested in the construction and preservation of affordable housing every year in Cincinnati. Thousands of essential workers who have kept us all going through this pandemic; home health aides, food delivery drivers, grocery store employees, teaching assistants, pharmacy technicians and nursing assistants, to name a few, cannot afford the median cost of even a one-bedroom apartment in Cincinnati. Even before the pandemic, thousands of Cincinnati families have been struggling for a long time to keep their home by paying for housing they cannot afford, because nothing they can afford is available to them. Because having nowhere you can afford to live is not sustainable, so many adults and children have totally lost their housing.
If passed by Cincinnati voters, each year these funds would build or preserve 500 or more homes affordable to Cincinnati households whose annual income is at or below 60% of the area median income; currently $34,327. Today, the 41% of Cincinnati households with incomes at or below this level are competing for a regularly decreasing number of homes they can afford. Once homes are developed with these funds, they will stay affordable.
This initiative is different from what we are used to. If passed in May, these dollars will prioritize thousands of hard-working Cincinnati families who typically can’t catch a break. It would also establish a Community Oversight Board, which will ensure the money is spent as it is supposed to be spent. The Oversight Board will be a group of regular people, nominated by regular people. Cincinnatians will easily be able to know how the funds are being invested and be a part of making those decisions. This board will include people who work in social services, fair housing, neighborhood and housing development, funding, housing and homelessness advocacy and law. The board will specifically include people who rent; have experienced homelessness; and own their homes. As an all-volunteer board, they will ensure fiscal responsibility over the Public’s money, and invest it according to the Public’s interest.
How often have you voted for something and actually saw the positive effects of it? When have you voted for something new and then looked around your neighborhood and seen real results? If enough Cincinnatians vote for this on May 4, you will see the results. You will see it through the renovated buildings, the families who no longer have to bounce from couch to couch, the shortening lines in front of eviction court, the seniors who can afford to stay in their neighborhood, the new living-wage construction and property management jobs, the children who grow up without the trauma of regularly losing their home, neighbors and school connection.
Through the Public’s continued support, we can start down the path to a Cincinnati where everyone has a safe, stable place to call home. Cincinnati Action for Housing Now is ready to continue channeling this energy and driving forward a vote for affordable housing on May 4, 2021.
To get involved, visit www.actionforhousingnow.com or call 513-421-7803.
Everyday at the Homeless Coalition, we demand access to affordable housing, livable wages, and housing protections to everyone in our community. We recognize that the weight and burden of anti-Black racism cannot only be carried by those who are bravely facing displacement each day, but by our entire community who accepts the “false-peace” as our Black communities are erased by white generational wealth.
Known as gentrification, displacement is heralded and privileged by governmental policies that have claimed a “renaissance” in Over-the-Rhine while aggressively ignoring the impact on Black residents – the majority of whom have been forcibly removed from the neighborhood over the past decade. As the wealthy, white, elite set their eyes on the West End and countless other neighborhoods, it’s time to get focused on the fundamentals.
This Black History Month, we will offer our public education program to you, including essential Speakers, innovative Trainings, and informative Tours – all virtual and open to all – please help us build an informed community!
We hope that you’ll share this experience with your family, co-workers, neighbors, and friends. Register here: https://www.brownpapertickets.com/profile/244215
Tickets are Pay-What-You-Can, but your financial support helps us compensate the Speakers and Trainers and keeps our program free to others. BUT Please do not let the cost be a barrier – free tickets are available now!
Register and remember to put the Zoom link on your calendar! Thank you!
The Homeless Coalition is hiring one AmeriCorps VISTA service member to organize tenants in eligible Project-Based Section 8 properties. This is a one-year contract starting in March 2021. Throughout the service year, the AmeriCorps member will organize with tenants of Project-Based Section 8 housing and will build residents’ capacity through outreach, education, and leadership development. They will support tenants to form tenant associations at properties that lack tenant representation. Deliverables include research, outreach materials, and tenant engagement plans. The deadline to apply is Sunday, January 31, 2021.
- Register to create a New Member account in the MyAmeriCorps portal
- After your New Member account is created, apply for our VISTA opportunity. This will require you to write a two, short reflective essays, and to submit contact information for two references.
- We plan to conduct at least two rounds of interviews. The final step in the interview process is a background check through the AmeriCorps funding partner. Individuals with misdemeanors or felonies on their records are considered on a case-by-case basis. The AmeriCorps funding partners are still figuring out how the background checks will be conducted without LiveScan fingerprinting.
At the Homeless Coalition, we embrace and encourage differences in age, color, disability, ethnicity, family or marital status, gender identity or expression, language, national origin, physical and mental ability, race, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, veteran status, and other characteristics that make our team unique.
The Benefits of AmeriCorps
AmeriCorps is a network of service opportunities, and VISTA is one of the three AmeriCorps programs. VISTA, which stands for Volunteers in Service to America, specialize in alleviating the causes of poverty through building capacity in their communities. AmeriCorps members are not volunteers, interns, or entry-level at their host site. They are community members who are actively seeking opportunities to enrich themselves through civic engagement and community building.
At the Homeless Coalition, the Community Organizer VISTA members will receive a living stipend, full health care coverage, childcare if needed, transportation assistance either through a bus card or mileage reimbursement, and an educational award upon completion of the service year. The living stipend is approximately $1026 each month. A living stipend is “reimbursement for living expenses,” not income. It will not affect any government benefits members receive, such as housing vouchers, SNAP, or anything else.