The Mission Planning Team (MPT) is excited to announce our endorsement of a proposal to use Jeff How’s home for transitional housing. The proposal, submitted by the Community Ministries Plus (CM+) group, aims to repair the home and gift it to our long-time community partner, The Interfaith Coalition for use in their Bridges transitional housing program.
Through the program, families experiencing housing insecurity or homelessness are offered a limited one-year lease. The family builds rental history (with reduced rent and savings program) and is supported by case management, volunteers, and Interfaith programs as they seek permanent housing. In five years, Jeff’s home is expected to serve five families.
CM+ originally proposed gifting the home to Interfaith immediately after completing repairs. However, the Interfaith Board recently identified two constraints:
Thus, additional time is needed to assess the sewer, define the partnership, and develop a master lease agreement which would enable Interfaith to use the property for transitional housing until debts are paid. A formal recommendation to the congregation will not be made at the June 5 semi-annual meeting as planned; instead, it will be presented to the congregation for approval during a special meeting later this summer. This delay poses no risk to completing implementation by December 31, 2022.
Regardless of how the property will be used, we’ve determined that basic repairs are needed. Thus, CM+ will move forward with their work to raise funds and coordinate volunteers to do so. The MPT is ordering an inspection of the sewer line. These expenses will be paid from a dedicated account established for the Jeff How estate.
While the CM+ proposal was the only application received by the MPT, it meets all seven acceptance criteria and would have earned high marks in many of the selection criteria as well.