Paramount to our vision, and alongside our development projects, Home City collaborates with numerous partners to build the social infrastructure essential to community life.
Our Resident Engagement Program offers after-school teen programs, workforce readiness and financial independence classes, early childhood literacy programs, among many others.
The video to the left shows our engagement after the 2011 tornado and how we foster a mutually supportive and respectful community.
In 2013, with encouragement from youth living at Liberty Hill, a vacant lot next door was acquired and a park, basketball court and playground were developed. These areas are managed in collaboration with residents.
In 2014 Liberty Hill received a 2-year grant from United Way to provide a financial stability program for residents. The adults who participated in the program over the two years demonstrated significant strides in their budgeting and overall financial management.
In 2015 Liberty Hill’s resident service program launched a school attendance incentive program that provided cash awards to students who have excellent school attendance, as well as rent credits to their parents. This program had good initial success and was revised, based on experience and feedback, and re-launched in 2016.
Also in 2015, HCDI contracted with Housing Management Resources to provide property management and resident engagement services to these properties. HMR employs property managers, a resident engagement team and maintenance staff to oversee all aspects of the HCDI properties.
In 2016 HCDI made the decision to build upon these efforts by launching a full Resident Engagement program at all of their properties. Home City Resident Engagement staff work collaboratively with the residents, other Home City staff and community partners. Together they seek to provide programs and activities that build community and address foundational issues residents face such as: under employment, lack of necessary job skills, literacy issues, health concerns, financial insecurity, and more. The aim is to build aspirational communities where residents identify their goals, build on their strengths, experience success and move out of poverty. To guide this work a Resident Engagement Manager, who brings three decades of relevant experience to the effort, was hired.
In 2017 Home City identified three broad initiatives to guide Resident Engagement: Education & Literacy, Food Security & Health, and Job Readiness & Career Development. Grants were awarded by The Community Foundation of Western Mass, United Way of Pioneer Valley, MassHousing and The Hall Foundation to support a variety of programs associated with these initiatives.