Brave Road and Village Creed are partnering with the SDS Captial Group to provide a holistic approach to assist people experiencing homelessness.
Those combating homelessness face many stressors. Factors contributing to homelessness can span from lack of employment opportunities and a decline in available public assistance to domestic violence, mental illness and addiction. With the average housing wage exceeding the average renter’s hourly wage by $5 an hour, it’s clear that a lack of affordable housing is one of the biggest obstacles.Not only do individuals struggling with homelessness need affordable housing, they need support and resources to overcome their other life stressors. Organizations such as the SDS Captial Group and many others are working to support the homeless through a holistic approach.
Claire is a social worker that lives in the new apartment building that the SDS Captial Group just built through the SDS Supportive Housing Fund. Her new full-time job is case managing twenty residents. She is just one of sixty case workers that are serving the 1200 residents in the apartment building. She is excited to be part of an initiative that directly helps the 59,000 people experiencing homelessness in LA County.
Her work includes setting goals and developing paths for success for each of her residents. She is experienced in providing a range of wellness services and quality referrals to mental healthcare and other resources. Some of those resources happen to be right on the ground floor of the apartment complex. The SDS Captial Group designed the apartment ground floor to provide needed retail, healthcare and grocery spaces. Residents with entrepreneurial spirits can run small businesses in their own building.
Using the COT Hub model, a residential association has formed in the downstairs coffee shop/meeting room. This association has appointed a board of directors made up of building residents to run the COT Hub. The elected board decides which resources and programs they want to make available to the residents of the apartment building. Now residents can help direct their own development and assist others to do the same.
Oscar is one of the new residents of the SDS building. He is happy to have a place to call home for the first time in eight years. Oscar is working with his case worker Claire to help him develop the skills he needs to cope with some previous trauma and develop healthy communication skills. He is attending group therapy through the apartment’s community center.
Claire has recommended several community classes and volunteer opportunities to Oscar through the Village Creed platform to help him develop the skills he needs for a grounds & landscaping job. When Oscar and other residents find events and services on the platform, all of the hours they spend in those programs are recorded. They are then compiled on an electronic Community Engagement Transcript. Oscar can use this transcript to showcase his efforts on developing himself and his skills.
Oscar is hopeful for the future. For the first time, Oscar believes that he has the power to make a better life for himself. Oscar enjoys actively participating in the community center and wants to apply to be on the board of directors next year.
A New Model for a New Day
Through the SDS Captial Group, individuals combating homelessness can receive supportive housing and resources in a holistic way. Through Brave Road, the stories of the residents and caseworkers are shared with the public, garnering more awareness and support. Through Village Creed, individuals like Oscar are able to see what services and support are available to him in his community and receive recommendations from Claire and the other social workers.
The SDS Captial Group partners with Brave Road, a unique public benefit corporation that specializes in creating collaborations around causes. Brave Road has a joint venture partnership with Village Creed to mobilize support and improve logistics for this homelessness initiative in L.A. County.
About the Author:
Megan Jones is the head of the Humanities Division of Village Creed. She graduated from Covenant College with a degree in Community Development in 2014. Her passion is fostering connections within communities to help individuals thrive.