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Courtesy of What's Up Newp
HNRI is the State’s membership organization for non-profit agencies that are committed to the development of affordable housing and vital communities across Rhode Island. HNRI is committed to strengthening its affordable housing member organizations and the larger affordable housing and community development sectors.
Homes RI is a united effort of multiple organizations including nonprofits and housing organizations. The goal of Homes RI is to shine a spotlight on the need for increased investments in the production, preservation and maintenance of affordable homes across Rhode Island and the ways we can accomplish this as a state. Homes RI is the external communications platform for the Housing Opportunities Initiative (HOI) and serves the housing sector and the public. HOI is a cross-sector coalition of participants who, using a collective impact approach, are working to increase the supply of safe, healthy and affordable housing throughout Rhode Island over the next decade.
HNRI is seeking a passionate individual to execute key communications activities for Homes RI and to support a resident-centered community engagement strategy for the initiative. This position will build on key recommendations from stakeholders including: 1) educate the public and policymakers related to the benefits of community development and 2) support the communications infrastructure of the Initiative through the Homes RI platform.
Salary: This is a part-time hourly position of 24-30 hours per week, at rate of $22 per hour. Benefits are not included.
Please e-mail a letter of interest and your resume by 5pm on Friday January 18, 2019 to Ms. Katherine West at HR@housingnetworkri.org. Please include the position title in the subject heading of your e-mail.
HNRI is an equal opportunity employer and does not unlawfully discriminate against employees or applicants on the basis of an individual’s race, color, country of ancestral origin, religion, disability, familial status, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, gender expression or identity, or status as a victim of domestic violence. Whenever practicable, HNRI will make reasonable accommodations for qualified individuals with disabilities to the extent required by law.
January 14, 2019
Fields will continue in her role as Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director until her contract expires March 1.
“Barbara Fields has had a decades long commitment to Rhode Island and to the complex housing and homelessness challenges we face,” said Governor Raimondo. “I want to thank Barbara for her four years of service at RIHousing and her commitment to the people of our state. I wish her well in her future endeavors.”
Fields gave the following statement:
“Recently, I was selected by my colleagues from across the country to serve on the Executive Board of the National Council of State Housing Agencies, a national organization uniquely positioned to address the country’s housing crisis. Since accepting this appointment, I have been presented with a number of opportunities that would allow me to continue championing housing issues on a larger scale. Therefore, I will not continue in my role as Executive Director of RIHousing when my contract expires on March 1.
It has been a privilege to serve as the Executive Director of RIHousing for the past four years. During my time here, we have accomplished a great deal. We’ve invested hundreds of millions of dollars into the Rhode Island economy, financed the development of desperately needed affordable apartments, and helped a record number of Rhode Islanders purchase their first home. I could not be more proud of the amazing team here at RIHousing.
I want to thank the Board and the RIHousing team, a wonderful group of committed public servants who work hard every day to help Rhode Islanders realize the dream of a safe, warm home for themselves and their families. I also want to thank Governor Raimondo for the opportunity to turn RIHousing around, place it on a path where it can achieve its full potential and is now poised to do the enormous amount of work in the area of housing that remains to be done here.”
During her tenure, RIHousing achieved its highest mortgage volume in 20 years. Under her leadership the corporation launched new, innovative financing tools to help more Rhode Islanders have a place to call home including the Ocean State Grad Grant, First Down and a Middle Market rental program. Fields also helped improve the agency’s bond rating while expanding loan servicing operations by 40 percent.
In October of 2018, Fields was selected by colleagues from across the country to serve on the Executive Board of the National Council of State Housing Agencies, a national organization uniquely positioned to address the country’s housing crisis. Following her departure, Fields intends to weigh opportunities at the national level.
The RIHousing Board of Commissioner Chairman Nicolas Retsinas and the Executive Office of Commerce will convene a search committee for Fields’ replacement.
RIHousing works to ensure that all people who live in Rhode Island can afford a healthy, attractive home that meets their needs. RIHousing provides loans, grants, education and assistance to help Rhode Islanders find, rent, buy, build and keep a good home. Created by the General Assembly in 1973, RIHousing is a self-sustaining corporation and receives no state funding for operations. For more information regarding RIHousing visit www.RIHousing.com or follow us @RIHousing on Facebook and Twitter.
Providence, RI – RIHousing Executive Director Barbara Fields has been appointed Secretary/Treasurer of the National Council of State Housing Agencies (NCSHA), the agency announced today. Fields was appointed to serve a one-year term on the NCHSA Executive Board at its annual meeting last week.
“Today, Rhode Island and the nation are facing a housing crisis,” said Fields. “I am honored to be elected to serve on the board of the National Council of State Housing Finance Agencies, and have the opportunity to work with them to create and execute policies that will help address that crisis.”
“The housing finance agencies (HFAs) that make up the NCHSA are a strong and vibrant network that can deliver federal resources and leverage private resources to meet the current crisis and build stronger, healthier communities across America,” Fields added.
Since assuming her current role at RIHousing in 2015, the agency has significantly expanded it initiatives in homeownership, development and mortgage servicing, adding the State of Maine as customer, among others. It has also registered improvements in its bond ratings and greatly expanded its partnerships in the community. Fields previously served on NCSHA’s Board in 2015 and brings nearly three decades of experience in expanding access to housing, building strong communities, and championing economic development efforts to her new role as Secretary/Treasurer.
NCSHA is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization created by the nation’s state Housing Finance Agencies (HFAs) more than 40 years ago. Its mission is to advance, through advocacy and education, the efforts of the nation’s state HFAs and their partners. NCSHA’s members are the HFAs of every state, the District of Columbia, New York City, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, as well as over 300 affiliate members in the housing finance field. The (Executive) Board is responsible for setting goals and developing strategies to further NCSHA’s initiatives.
RIHousing works to ensure that all people who live in Rhode Island can afford a healthy, attractive home that meets their needs. RIHousing provides loans, grants, education and assistance to help Rhode Islanders find, rent, buy, build and keep a good home. Created by the General Assembly in 1973, RIHousing is a self-sustaining corporation and receives no state funding for operations.
Application Deadline: 3 p.m. Thursday, September 19, 2019
The Housing Resources Commission is pleased to announce the opening of a competitive funding round for Building Homes Rhode Island (BHRI), a State-funded initiative of the Housing Resources Commission. At this time, the Housing Resources Commission will be making an estimated $12 million available for the development and preservation of affordable housing.
While the BHRI RFP is using the same/similar forms as other initiatives administered by Rhode Island Housing such as the HOME, HTC programs, please note the program requirements, priorities and application process are distinct and may differ.
The BHRI 3 (Round 3) RFP, however, is also soliciting interest relative to the Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP). The NSP is designed primarily to acquire and rehabilitate abandoned and foreclosed properties in neighborhoods highly impacted by the foreclosure crisis. An Appendix requesting information for those projects which would qualify for NSP consideration, has been attached to the application. Projects meeting NSP program requirements should complete these Appendix questions. Support of such proposals will be considered from both funding sources (BHRI and/or NSP). Failure to complete the appendix questions could negatively impact consideration of your project.
Please note that projects targeting Special Needs populations, broadly defined to include the homeless, disabled, elderly or any other population requiring special services/accommodations - will be highly prioritized in this funding round.
Projects which fall within identified Opportunity Zones, should detail such the application narrative. Opportunity zones are a community investment tool intended to encourage long term investment in key areas. It is a priority objective that State investments be coordinated in such areas.
ELIGIBLE APPLICAN TS:
Nonprofit housing developers, for-profit developers, public housing authorities, municipalities, faith-based organizations, community housing development organizations, recognized tribes, state departments or agencies and redevelopment corporations.
Threshold criteria will be utilized to determine which applications will conform to the requirements of the funding round. Any application determined to be non-compliant with the stated threshold criteria will be eliminated from consideration:
DISTRIBUTION PLAN AND SCORING:
The BHRI Distribution Plan, including funding priorities and scoring criteria, are attached and can be found on the State's website at http://www.ohcd.ri.gov
Applications are due by 3:00p.m. on Thursday, September 19, 2019. Two hard copies and one electronic version of the full application on CD or thumb drive must be submitted to Raymond Neirinckx, Office of Housing and Community Development/Housing Resources Commission, One Capitol Hill, 3rd Floor, Providence, R.I. 02908-5873.
If you have questions about the BHRI program, please contact Raymond Neirinckx, Housing Commission Coordinator, at 222-4893 or Raymond.Neirinckx@doa.ri.gov .
JOB OPENING: COMMUNITY ORGANIZER - LEAD POISONING (PROVIDENCE, CENTRAL FALLS)
FULL TIME (35 hrs/wk)
SALARY: $36,000-$40,000/yr, depending on experience
The Childhood Lead Action Project is looking for a full-time Community Organizer to coordinate grassroots advocacy campaigns aimed at eliminating lead poisoning in Rhode Island. The new organizer will take primary responsibility for staffing our existing activist coalition based in Providence and assisting with related community education and outreach activities. They will also play a supporting role with similar work in Central Falls and other areas of the state.
This is an exciting job for someone who believes that it is possible to change deeply entrenched social problems when groups of people directly affected by injustice come together to hold those in power accountable and demand meaningful reforms. The Childhood Lead Action Project is a great fit for someone who cares deeply about social justice, believes in sharing power and responsibility with others, and who wants to work on system change that will bring wide- reaching benefits to local families.
The Childhood Lead Action Project believes that every child deserves a safe place to play, learn, and grow, and that includes safety from lead. Although our state has made tremendous progress reducing childhood lead poisoning rates over the last few decades, far too many children are still at risk of exposure. Low-income families, people of color, and refugees unfairly face a higher risk of lead exposure, on top of other challenges and forms of discrimination. Lead is all around us - in paint on old houses, contaminated soil, and pipes scattered throughout the drinking water delivery system. However, lead poisoning can be prevented if these sources are removed or covered up properly. We believe this can happen for our whole community if people have access to information, technical training, and financial assistance - and if landlords are required to keep homes lead safe.
In the past, we have won significant victories in all four of these areas. We are proud of these accomplishments, but know this is not enough. We are now working to make the most of current laws and resources and shine a light on the gaps that still remain, such as the clearly unmet needs of undocumented immigrants and others fearful of interaction with the legal system. In general, we are working to increase the supply of safe, affordable housing and build the political and social power of families affected by lead poisoning.
Specific campaign goals currently include:
• Systematic, fair, and effective enforcement of lead safety requirements for rental housing, with steps taken to support tenants in the process and protect them from landlord retaliation, and to ensure that lower-income landlords receive extra help. General landlord accountability to tenants, especially in cases where tenants are uncomfortable requesting or accepting help from government agencies is important. (Campaign steps could include: working w/ tenants to investigate and expose serious cases of retaliation and negligence to the media)
• More financial resources to help low-income homeowners (including landlords) afford repair work needed to keep their properties safe (state and federal policy)
• Systems and practices that will connect existing lead safety resources (e.g., homeowner grants, legal consultation for tenants, free lead safety training for painters and others) to people and communities who need help the most have faced an unfair proportion of the problem in the past
• Regular coordination and stronger partnerships between agencies with enforcement responsibilities and those providing lead abatement assistance (and related services), and systems that will connect these agencies’ resources
The organizer will be responsible for a variety of activities to support campaign and organizational goals. Major advocacy campaign decisions will be made together by coalition members and staff.
• Recruit and provide initial orientation and training to volunteer activists, with special effort made to engage families affected by lead poisoning/lead hazards
• Drive campaign momentum by providing staff support for coalition meetings and activities (scheduling, reminders/turnout, agenda prep, facilitation, etc.)
• Provide structure for focused, inclusive, and fun process as coalition members work to set goals, choose effective organizing tactics, and evaluate/celebrate progress as a group
• Arrange for formal and informal educational opportunities for coalition members, as needs arise (for example, skill-sharing among group members, presentations/Q&A sessions by staff members, etc.)
• Communicate effectively with decision-makers and partner agencies on behalf of the organization, and support coalition members in doing the same
• Participate in meetings, protests, hearings, and other activities planned by coalition, and help coalition members prepare, participate, and reflect on their experiences
• Participate in community outreach and education regarding tenants’ rights, financial assistance for lead abatement for homeowners, and other specific topics related to lead poisoning prevention and safe, affordable housing access (could include: door knocking, house parties, community group presentations, more)
• Maintain organized, accurate records and assist supervisor with reporting on activities and accomplishments to various audiences
• Other tasks, as needed, interested, and assigned by Executive Director
We value learning and growth highly at the Childhood Lead Action Project. The Community Organizer will receive ongoing training and supervision from our Executive Director, with additional support from coworkers. Initial training will include assigned readings, discussions, in-person classes, online tutorials, research assignments, and opportunities to shadow or interview a variety of lead professionals and other contacts. Ongoing training will include occasional opportunities to attend conferences and workshops. Depending on the new staff member’s experience, training topics will include: Childhood Lead Action Project resources, rules, culture, and history; causes and effects of lead poisoning; organizing tactics and strategy; environmental justice/health equity; history of lead poisoning policy and activism; state and local government; short and long-term lead poisoning prevention methods; lead poisoning prevention law and policy; and relevant research methods. We encourage all staff to reflect on their own personal learning styles and goals and share this with the Executive Director so that assignments can be tailored to needs and strengths.
Generous benefits package, reflecting our strong commitment to providing a sustainable work/life balance, includes:
• Health and dental insurance (premiums covered 100% by employer for full-time employees)
• Paid vacation, holiday, sick, and personal days after 3-month trial period, with vacation time increase after 2 and 4 years employment
• Opportunity to participate in a retirement plan, with employer contribution after 2 years employment
• Reimbursement for miles driven for required work activities at standard (federal) rate
Our office is in a beautiful restored Victorian in the West End of Providence, right on several bus lines. Each staff member has a desk, computer, phone, and office supplies. We share a mini kitchen w/ refrigerator, microwave, and toaster. There are also several tasty, reasonably affordable places to grab lunch within walking distance (diner, coffee shop, Guyanese restaurant, Guatemalan restaurant, fruit stand, pizza). Staff are not required to set identical schedules, but we do plan our time so that everyone will be here together on as regular a basis as possible within general office hours. This gives us the opportunity to teach and learn from each other, build trust and community, and work together towards shared goals. It makes it possible for a small staff to be widely accessible and responsive to community members and organizational partners, as a group. Of our 5 current staff members, 3 have worked for the Childhood Lead Action Project for over 10 years.
• Community organizing experience (paid or unpaid) strongly preferred
• Bilingual (Spanish/English) fluency strongly preferred
• Excellent verbal and interpersonal skills
• Highly organized and dependable
• Able and willing to work nights and weekends to accommodate community member schedules and needs
• Driver’s license and regular access to a car (for meeting families in different areas of the state, providing rides to
meetings, actions, etc.)
• Able to help others identify and address patterns of racism, classism, and similar problems
• Able to facilitate respectful and genuine community-building and decision-making within diverse groups
• Comfortable with public speaking, media interviews, door-to-door canvassing, and meeting lots of new people on a regular basis
• Computer skills (ability to use common office programs, troubleshoot typical office hardware and software problems, and learn to use technology that is new to you)
• Basic research skills, including the ability to identify the most important questions to be answered for a project and and evaluate quality of information sources
• Experience teaching adults (in any context) preferred
• Familiarity with Rhode Island/Rhode Island communities very helpful, especially Providence and Central Falls
• Knowledge of the following topics helpful (gained from school, work, or other life experiences):
• Environmental justice/environmental health/health equity
• Housing safety, tenants’ rights
• RI state and municipal government
• Lead poisoning/lead poisoning prevention law & policy
• Refugee resettlement and immigration system in U.S.
• Health and social services available to low-income families in RI
The Childhood Lead Action Project is an equal opportunity employer. People of color, women, and LGBT individuals are strongly encouraged to apply.
Send cover letter and resume to email@example.com. Application period open until position is filled.
Courtesy of Childhood Lead Action Project
Contact: Kristina Contreras Fox
(401) 424-1635 | firstname.lastname@example.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
18 June 2019 (PAWTUCKET, RI) -- By removing $500,000 for a social impact bond project (also known as Pay for Success), the General Assembly is leaving nearly $3 million dollars on the table in federal funding to help chronically homeless Rhode Islanders.
“Pay for Success would bring a potential $2.7M into the state help house people with significant challenges: our neighbors who keep going in and out of emergency rooms, the correctional system, emergency shelters. Rhode Island spends anywhere from $5.5M to $7.5M through these expensive and often ineffective systems, when housing people is much more effective and cheaper. Right now we spend so much with little success,” explained Caitlin Frumerie, Executive Director of the Rhode Island Coalition for the Homeless.
Pay for Success is a public-private partnership which funds effective social services through a performance-based contract. If, following an independent evaluation, the program achieves predetermined outcomes that benefit society and generate value for government, then government will make outcomes payments to investors. However, the government pays only at the level of outcomes achieved.
“Pay for Success would bring 125 vouchers for Permanent Supportive Housing, which pairs affordable housing with support services to meet the needs of people experiencing homelessness.. According to the feasibility study we conducted, Pay for Success would save Rhode Island from $1.8M to $2.6M a year, in addition to the federal matching funds. Other states, including Connecticut and Massachusetts, have implemented Pay for Success projects with positive outcomes that realized significant savings for their state governments.”
Governor Raimondo included $500,000 for Pay for Success in her original budget, as a line item in Commerce Corps. It was removed from the budget in the House Finance Committee’s hearing this past Friday.
“Passing that $500K will immediately unlock nearly $1million in federal funding from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development and the US Department of Justice,” said Frumerie. “Furthermore, we applied for additional $1.725M from the Social Impact Partnerships to Pay for Results Act (SIPPRA) fund, essentially a national Pay for Success fund run by the US Treasury. Yet the feds need to see that RI wants to be a partner in this work with a project on the ground. They want to know that we’re committed to building a better system that delivers results and is fiscally responsible. Removing this funding sends the opposite message, and we will be cut off from receiving millions of dollars as a result.”
“It’s another 125 vouchers for Permanent Supportive Housing. On any given night in RI, 198 of our neighbors are experiencing chronic homelessness. Through Pay for Success, we have the best possible path to helping those Rhode Islanders in need. Through our hard work, we secured millions of dollars that does not come from RI taxpayer funds for this project. We assembled a comprehensive working group of stakeholders who meet regularly to move this forward. All that progress goes out the window with this budget cut. We urge the General Assembly to restore the original $500,000 for Pay for Success.”
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