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Opportunities for Broome Brings More Supportive Housing to Downtown Binghamton

11.13.2018

Friends and supporters gathered October 18 to celebrate the opening of 88-90 Carroll Street in downtown Binghamton. This newest development will provide permanent supportive housing for 10 formerly homeless individuals and families, including several who have high medical needs.

“Individuals and families that come here are faced with problems, and housing is usually the first step in addressing those problems," said Mark Silvanic, CEO of Opportunities for Broome. 

Dana Greenberg and Jason Harper represented NYS Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) at the ribbon cutting and Binghamton Mayor Rich David was also in attendance to celebrate this opening with the community.

A tenant, Alonzo Harper spoke about the impact having an apartment and working with Opportunities had had on his life: “I landed another job..I actually have a better relationship with my children because I get to see them more often because I have a place… and (the people at Opportunities for Broome) have given me faith in other people. I didn’t think that anybody would fight for anybody out here.”

The building is a three story brick structure near several Opportunities redevelopment sites and offers comprehensive social services to tenants.

The project is funded by the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) under the Homeless Housing and Assistance Program (HHAP).  Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative funds the services for the 10 supportive housing units. Patricia Every was the architect and WL Kline was the contractor for this project.

| What's New, New York State, Member News, Openings


Unique People Services Cuts Ribbon on its First Supportive Housing Development

05.18.2018

Friends, champions and elected officials gathered on Friday May 11 to celebrate the opening of Lynn’s Place, the first supportive and affordable housing building developed by Unique People Services (UPS) in the south Bronx. Named after UPS’ founder Lynn Wonsang, the six-story complex consists of 69 units, 42 of which are supportive housing.

"Looking in front of me, I see the fruit of nearly three decades of dreaming. Dreaming that grew into a clear vision with amazing champions---- and we’d like to say thank you for your passion for our vision in making Lynn’s Place a reality," remarked Yvette B. Andre, the Executive Director of UPS at the opening ceremony.

Yvette B. Andre was joined by Ann Sullivan, Commissioner of NYS Office of Mental Health (OMH); Melissa Mark-Viverito, former NYC City Council Speaker; Assembly Member Michael Blake, NYC HPD Assistant Commissioner Emily Lehman, Hudson Housing Capital’s Sam Ganeshan; Corporation for Supportive Housing’s Kristin Miller, as well as representatives from State Senator Gustavo Rivera and City Council Members Diana Ayala and Rafael Salamanca Jr.

“Over 50% of units are dedicated to people with serious mental illnesses. This opens up their dreams,” said Commissioner Sullivan.

Melissa Mark-Viverto, who represented the neighborhood when the project broke ground, congratulated all the partners and spoke about the importance of investing tax dollars in housing for those in need.

“It is projects like this that give you faith that government is here to serve the most vulnerable. Proud that as speaker of the City Council we invested in such a worthy project,” she said.

Two of Lynn’s Place residents, Ms. Ivory and Mr. Digilio also spoke at the ceremony, expressing their gratitude for having Lynn’s Place as their new home.

“It is really hard to be homeless, especially when you’re older. I’m just really grateful to be in a place where people can see me as a person - not as someone with an illness, but just as me,” shared Ms. Ivory.

The building features a community room, a large sunken courtyard for recreational use, and a beautifully landscaped rooftop. Comprehensive on-site social services are funded by NYS Office of Mental Health (OMH).

This project was funded through the NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), the Community Preservation Corporation (CPC), CSH, Hudson Housing Capital, Capital One Bank, Deutsche Bank, New York City Council and NYSERDA.

The building is designed by Urban Architectural Initiatives and Procida Construction Corporation was the contractor for the project.  Robert Sanborn Development was the developer.

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Beautiful Renaissance Village Opens in Middle Island, NY

10.24.2017


Beautiful Renaissance Village in Middle Island, NY. Photo credit: Kimathi Witt (2017 Tenant of the Year).

On October 16th,  a beautiful, autumn day, Concern for Independent Living celebrated the opening of Renaissance Village, a 123-unit mixed-income supportive housing development in Middle Island, Suffolk County. Renaissance Village provides 50 units for homeless adults with mental health challenges who are high Medicaid users, 72 units for low-income individuals and families, and one superintendent unit.

After a warm welcome from Concern’s Executive Director and Network Board Treasurer Ralph Fasano, Gail Lynch-Bailey, President of the Middle Island Civic Association, spoke movingly about how Renaissance Village is “not only a rebirth for all the people who are starting new lives, but for those of us who have been here a long time, and awaiting a rebirth for our community.”

NYS Homes & Community Renewal (HCR) Assistant Commissioner Sean Fitzgerald was honored by Concern at the opening for the integral part he’s played in making Concern’s many supportive and affordable housing projects a success.

Other dignitaries who spoke at the opening included Commissioner Ann Marie T. Sullivan of NYS Office of Mental Health (OMH) who said “what is really successful is when individuals who are living with mental illness have the opportunity to become part of the community that will help them traverse that road of hope and recovery and that’s what you’re doing here;” Commissioner Samuel Roberts of NYS Office of Temporary & Disability Assistance (OTDA); Steven Bellone, Suffolk County Executive; Supervisor Edward P. Romaine, Town of Brookhaven; Sarah Anker, Legislator, Suffolk County; Councilman Michael Loguercio, Town of Brookhaven; Brian Loeb of Federal Home Loan Bank of New York; and Maurice Coleman of Bank of America.

Formerly underutilized land in the heart of Middle Island, Renaissance Village now features nine townhouse-style buildings; a community center with exercise room, a computer room, and ample outdoor space for residents to enjoy.

Funding for Renaissance Village was provided by HCR, OMH, Bank of America, County of Suffolk, Federal Home Loan Bank of New York, and Astoria Bank.

The development team included the law firms of Russo, Karl, Widmaier & Cordano, and Nixon Peabody, the project’s attorneys; Belfor Long Island, the general contractor; DeLaCour, Ferrara & Church, the project architect; and Betts Housing Consultants. 

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Kenyon Craig, Housing Visions’ CEO, steps down after 27 years

08.02.2017


Kenyon Craig.

In 1994, I returned to my home town of Syracuse to help Central New York Services open the first upstate supportive housing residence. I was fortunate to have Housing Visions (HV) as a next door neighbor.  HV had been buying and rehabbing multiple properties in the area, using the fairly new Low Income Housing Tax Credit to create neighborhood change. That’s how I came to know the brilliant work of Kenyon Craig, HV’s founder.  I was fortunate to see our neighborhood change around us as these investments helped make run-down Greek Revival, Queen Anne and Arts and Crafts homes new again.  Over time, the boarded-up, dilapidated and often vacant homes of East Genesee Street have been replaced by well-maintained homes and rising property values: so much so that HV can no longer afford to develop there (not that they need to)!has been transformed. 

Housing Visions has continued to grow and innovate since those days, creating extraordinary residences like VanKeuren Square for homeless veterans or replacing an old public housing tower with beautiful garden apartments in another supportive housing development, Maple Heights.

After 27 years of success that began in a church basement in that same neighborhood Ken recently announced his retirement.  Over the years, Ken and HV developed about 1,600 units of affordable and supportive housing across New York, from Niagara Falls to Albany, from Oswego to the Pennsylvania border.  He showed me the amazing way affordable housing development can lead to community renewal.

I wish you well in retirement, Ken!

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Stephan Russo Departs Goddard Riverside Community Center

02.24.2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



Executive Director Stephan Russo stepped down from his position at Goddard Riverside Community Center (“Goddard”) at the end of the year, succeeded by Dr. Roderick Jones, formerly the President and CEO of Grace Hill Settlement House in St. Louis, Missouri. Prior to his eight years at Grace Hill, Dr. Jones served as President and CEO of the Community Place of Greater Rochester.

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| What's New, New York City, Member News


Tribute to Gina Quattrochi

01.18.2017

Gina Quattrochi, Bailey House CEO and lifelong HIV/AIDS advocate, passed away December 13, 2016 from complications due to cancer. During the 25 years she led Bailey House, Ms. Quattrochi played a key role in transforming the organization into an innovative leader in HIV/AIDS care and supportive housing.

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Gary Hattem Departs Deutsche Bank Americas Foundation

12.15.2016

Gary Hattem – a leading light in the affordable and supportive housing world for decades -- is retiring as President of the Deutsche Bank Americas Foundation at the end of the year. Mr. Hattem, was responsible for the firm’s corporate social responsibility activities in  the Americas region, Deutsche Bank’s social finance activities globally and established the Community Development Finance Group in 1990. More than $2.5 billion has been deployed through these activities in the U.S., and the international work has led to over $300 million in funds under management.

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StoryCorps and the Network Celebrate the Power of Supportive Housing

09.16.2016

In 2016, we continued our thriving collaboration with StoryCorps, the widely honored nonprofit that describes itself as “America’s oral history project,” and had the opportunity to record, preserve, and share the stories of 30 supportive housing tenants and staff members from Bailey House, Brooklyn Community Housing and Services (BCHS), Center for Urban Community Services (CUCS), Community Access, Housing and Services, Inc. (HSI), Housing Plus Solutions, Project Renewal, Services for the UnderServed (SUS), The Door, The Neighborhood Coalition for Shelter, St. Francis Friends of the Poor, Urban Pathways, and Volunteers of America – Greater New York.

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Capitol Hall Renovation

08.15.2016


Cutting the ribbon at the renovation ceremony.

On May 24th, Goddard Riverside celebrated the renovation of their Capitol Hall residence. One of the very first supportive housing residences in NYC, Capitol Hall was opened initially in 1983. Back then, plans were afoot to convert the decaying SRO into luxury housing, when a group of neighbors on the Upper West Side got together and took a stand in support of preserving affordable housing for their low-income neighbors. The building now houses 200 people including those who have been homeless and those were at risk of becoming homeless.

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BHC’s Founder Reflects on the Development of Her Vision for Ending Homelessness

08.02.2016


Tenants gathered in front of the building that would become their new home and BHC's fifth development, The Rio, at 10 Ft. Washington Avenue, during the renovation process that created 75 studios and 7 family apartments, circa 1989. (Ms. Baxter is in the red sweater).

On July 1, 2016 the life and work of Ellen Baxter, Founder and CEO of Broadway Housing Communities, were featured on NPR’s Invisibilia in an episode by reporter Lulu Miller, who introduced the episode by discussing her family’s experience with mental illness.  Just as Miller discussed the challenges in having a mentally-ill older sister, so did Ms. Baxter discuss similar experiences growing up with a mother living with mental illness and addictions.

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