Community Development Field

Shelterforce considers “community development” to be an extremely broad term. But there are still many conversations about the ways in which that broad work happens. Comprehensively or in coalitions of specialized organizations? Locally or regionally? Place or people? While the answers to all of these are usually “both,” there are many conversations to be had about “how.”

Seeking Solidarity Between Place-Based and Economic Justice Work

Last week, Brentin Mock over at CityLab had an incisive response to Peter Dreier’s Shelterforce article, The Revitalization Trap. Mock didn’t dispute Dreier’s argument that the goals of the...

Raising Money from Religious Institutions

Although religious institutions use most of the money they raise to pay for their own programs, organized religion is also a major source of funds for secular nonprofits.

Q: What’s the difference between community economic development and traditional economic development ?

A: A lot! In fact, they are so different that the Democracy Collaborative, which made the chart below, has coined the term “community wealth building” to set apart the truly community-oriented practitioners of economic development.
This Opa-locka, Florida resident had his loan request approved based on his character and not his credit score.

When a Person’s Character Trumps Their Credit Score

Some CDFIs approve loans based on a person’s character instead of their credit score. But they only recommend doing so when you know the applicant.

Financial Metrics Won’t Tell the Full Picture

Cost savings alone do not measure the full value of the collaboration between the health care and housing sectors.
police talking to homeless

Shelter Shorts, The Week in Community Development—Aug. 17

HUD's Latest Assault on Fair Housing | Decriminalizing Homelessness | "Buying the Block" | FEMA's Roadblocks In Puerto Rico | Public Transport And Health
courageous philanthropy cover

Reawakening “Courageous Philanthropy”

A review of Courageous Philanthropy: Going Public in a Closely Held World, by Jennifer Vanica.
A group of people stand three feet apart, mouths open as if shouting, outside a building that looks like a court. In the foreground a young white man in sunglasses with political buttons on his jacket holds a sign reading "Shut down housing court until coronavirus is past." In the center, a Black woman with a neon yellow T-shirt and black jacket holds a sign reading "Defend your home versus exposure to the virus? No one should have to choose."

Massachusetts Affordable Housing Providers Lead With Voluntary Eviction Moratorium—But There’s More to Do

Boston didn't have the power to suspend evictions itself, so while advocates pushed the courts and the state legislature, affordable housing providers agreed to a voluntary eviction moratorium and the city encouraged other landlords to join.
A map displaying the boundary of a neighborhood, with several green markers within the boundary and many other green markers outside of it.

Let’s Re-Place the Health Opportunity Maps

The way we map health opportunity has serious flaws. How can we make those maps more reflective of communities' lived experiences?

Dear CDFI Colleagues: It’s Time to be Transparent About Salaries in Job Postings

Companies that value meritocracy perform worse with pay equity when their internal policies do not align with their public-facing statements regarding pay.

Coming Together

The nonprofit housing development field has myriad intermediaries and support organizations, but no one unified voice. Should it have one?

Two Structured Community Development Funds: A Peek at How They Work

The details, lessons, and impact of two innovative community development funds created by Enterprise Community Partners.

Bonus: Diversifying the Public Sector

This is a sidebar to "On Board," an article about making a community development organization's board welcoming to residents and low-income members. CDC boards can be a first stop for preparing resident leaders for roles...

10-5-11 Poll: Should nonprofits manage scattered site rentals?

Selected feedback. You said: “Yes. It’s been my experience that nonprofits often do and should manage scattered site rental units. This is an especially good idea if the nonprofit has sufficient numbers of highly skilled staff...
The Whittier Street Health Center.

Healthy Futures Fund to Connect Health and Housing Practitioners

Building affordable housing with integrated health services. Health centers in low-income neighborhoods.These are goals of a $100M investment fund.

Can a Community Fair Save a Dying Town?

Last weekend there were two ribbon cuttings here in Louisa County. One was for an expansion of the food pantry and the other was to celebrate the relocation of a...

Remembering Debby Visser

On December 4, we lost a good friend, thoughtful colleague, and champion for social justice in Debby Visser.Debby's career in community and economic development spanned decades, but she was...

Housing Advocate, Minnesota State Representative Karen Clark

Mention the word "housing" in the Minnesota state legislature, and you're likely to be referred to the office of Representative Karen Clark. Clark, a lifelong activist for progressive causes and a 16-year veteran of...

On Optimism and Space: The Reclaiming Vacant Properties Conference

Before 2016’s first presidential debate plunged into birtherism and beauty pageants and Donald Trump ran into a wall of his own making, the Republican nominee produced a few exclamatory...
Word bubbles made of paper materials.

10 Ways to Talk About Inclusionary Housing, Differently

We need to talk about inclusionary housing in a different way that circumvents common misperceptions and creates a new narrative for policymakers in moderate markets and more conservative political climates. Here are 10 messages to help frame your conversations.

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