HOUSING OPPORTUNITIES

Goals + Outcomes for core program funding

>> Download the awards granted for this portfolio’s 2017 funding opportunity, arranged by goal

Goal 1: Preserve + increase the number of affordable housing rental units

At a basic level, we simply need more housing, especially more affordable housing. Meyer recognizes that affordable housing is basic social infrastructure — as a community grows it needs more affordable housing, just as it needs more parks, schools and higher capacity for sewer, water and transportation systems.

The market simply cannot deliver housing that's affordable to those with very low incomes. Even for those with steady work, affordable housing is becoming more elusive in Oregon communities as rents rise dramatically in some parts of the state. Population growth, wage stagnation, high construction costs and historically low vacancy rates have all contributed to a chronic shortage of affordable housing.

Communities of color, rural underserved communities and other marginalized populations are disproportionately impacted by this ongoing crisis. We are committed to preserving and increasing the number of affordable rental housing units in Oregon.

Intended outcomes

  • New Units: Increased number of affordable rental housing units
  • Preservation: Strengthened long-term physical and financial viability of existing affordable housing units

Examples of what we might fund

We invest capital grants in a range of acquisition and rehabilitation, preservation and new construction projects across the state. This includes rural projects, projects in high-opportunity urban areas and transit-oriented development. In addition to targeting rental housing that serves residents with incomes at or below 60 percent of Median Family Income (MFI), we will prioritize projects that meet the needs of historically marginalized and under-resourced populations, including communities of color, underserved rural communities and people with disabilities or other special needs. We may consider supporting projects serving incomes above 60 percent MFI where they address these priorities.

These are only examples to illustrate the types of projects we might fund. We invite other ideas that would further our goals, strategies and intended outcomes.

Goal 2: Support the housing stability + success of Oregonians living on low incomes

Affordable housing gives people the stability to meet their basic needs and the opportunity to build better lives. But many Oregon households face barriers in accessing available housing, retaining their housing and achieving their goals for advancement. We aim to fund interventions and supports that help low-income households and other marginalized populations to build a better life for themselves on a foundation of stable housing.

Intended outcomes

  • Access: Increased access to available housing for Oregonians living on low incomes
  • Retention: Improved housing stability and retention for Oregonians living on low incomes
  • Advancement: Increased opportunities for Oregonians living on low incomes to build the resources and skills necessary to advance toward their housing goals
  • Mitigating Displacement: Increased opportunities for renters and homeowners affected by displacement to remain in their existing homes or communities

Examples of what we might fund

Housing stability and success may look different in various communities, and we expect to fund a range of approaches that address the needs of specific communities and align with our equity lens. Examples include support for harder-to-house populations to find available housing and navigate the application process; wrap-around services for special needs populations; services and linkages to help residents achieve housing stability; and innovative strategies to help low-income renters and homeowners stay in their homes and communities. In addition to supporting individual resident needs, we seek approaches that help address housing disparities at the neighborhood and community levels, as well as systems-level projects that align and coordinate housing with other major systems of care.

These are only examples to illustrate the types of projects we might fund. We invite other ideas that would further our goals, strategies and intended outcomes.

Goal 3: Strengthen the housing sector by building capacity, diversity, equity and inclusion, and collaboration

We aim to support the strength, effectiveness and long-term health of key organizations, collaboratives and networks involved in advancing our Housing Opportunities goals. Strengthening the housing sector will require a variety of investments in organizational capacity, housing portfolio health, strategic partnerships, collaboration and coordination, and increased diversity, equity and inclusion.

Intended outcomes

  • Organizational Capacity: Strengthened skills and capacity of affordable housing organizations contribute to increased effectiveness, efficiency and long-term health
  • Network and Collaborative Capacity: Increased coordination and alignment among a broad range of organizations and systems that impact residents' lives and lead to better outcomes
  • Equity Focus: Increased equity commitment among affordable housing organizations and improved understanding of how to advance diversity, equity and inclusion through their work

Examples of what we might fund

We expect to fund both individual capacity building efforts as well as collaborative efforts. Priority will be given to projects with a strong equity focus. Examples include planning grants to help multisector partners to align their services to better support residents, technical assistance to help an organization develop and operationalize an equity frame for its work, and support to increase the capacity of housing organizations in underserved rural areas so that they can more effectively compete for available capital resources.

These are only examples to illustrate the types of projects we might fund. We invite other ideas that would further our goals, strategies and intended outcomes.