The importance of strong “personal touch” relationships in housing services

by Shawn Flanigan

To learn why the San Diego Housing Commission’s Achievement Academy – a suite of workforce development programs – is effective in supporting families receiving Section 8 vouchers, we continue conducting interviews in our longitudinal data collection with Achievement Academy families. Our conversations have put a spotlight on a key factor: a strong personal touch. The Section 8 recipients highly value the intensive, personal, positive interactions they have with Achievement Academy staff, and almost all of them point to positive outcomes that come from the personal investment of their “caseworkers”.

Complications and Contradictions in a Changing Neighborhood

by Lisa Bates

The corridor of gleaming high rises along Vancouver and Williams Avenues is a marked change from the early 2000s. When the Housing Authority of Portland (now known as Home Forward) applied for HOPE VI funds for the old Iris Court development, it was known as a rough area. Residents who lived there, or who knew of it by reputation …

Changing Lives in a Changing Neighborhood

By Dr. Lisa K. Bates

Joining the Access to Opportunity team is bringing me into dialogue with amazing scholars and practitioners with deep understanding of policy systems, focusing on an under-studied context of west coast cities. I am looking forward to sharing the research from Portland as we complete this initial round of work. We are looking at Humboldt Gardens, a development of Home Forward (the Housing Authority of Portland), as a site for understanding low-income parents’ (mostly parents of color) strategies for accessing ‘opportunity’.

Drown

Featuring Caroline Bhalla, Raphael Bostic,Elizabeth Currid-Halkett, and Richard Green

Junot Díaz made his debut with Drown, ten interconnected short stories in 1997. These coming-of-age stories grant the reader a brief glimpse into the lives of immigrants, their lives in poverty in the Dominican Republic through migration to life on the edges in New Jersey. “Diaz evokes a world in which fathers are gone, mothers fight with grim determination for their families and themselves, and the next generation inherits the casual cruelty, devastating ambivalence, and knowing humor of lives circumscribed by poverty and uncertainty.”