What we are doing: Meeting the urgent need for affordable housing
In Fairfield County, Connecticut many households struggle to afford housing, healthcare, childcare, transportation, and education. Part of the New York metro region, Fairfield County’s 335,000 households span 23 cities and towns (incl. Stamford, Danbury, Norwalk, Fairfield, and Bridgeport). Though Fairfield County is home to a concentration of corporate, institutional, and private resources, it also suffers from the largest income and achievement gap of the 100 largest U.S. metro areas. Key challenges underlying regional economic and racial inequity include inequitable access to jobs, quality housing, and healthy neighborhoods. Minority, low-income residents migrate between Fairfield County’s four major cities in search of housing, employment, education, and services.
Recognizing Fairfield County’s struggle to regionally scale effective housing solutions to meet the needs of our most vulnerable residents, FCCF is excited to announce the launch of Fairfield County’s Center for Housing Opportunity, a partnership between FCCF, The Housing Collective, Regional Plan Association and Partnership for Strong Communities. The Center leverages regional and statewide expertise from for-profit and nonprofit housing developers, regional anchor institutions (colleges & universities, hospitals, etc.) and partners in municipal government, community organizations, nonprofit service providers, funders, and business leaders. The Center for Housing Opportunity’s collective impact approach addresses Fairfield County’s widening opportunity gap, which negatively impacts the region’s economy and disproportionally affects minority, low-income, and disadvantaged households.
In 2014, PT Partners, a community-based initiative started in collaboration with Fairfield County’s Community Foundation. PT Partners works with residents in the 360-unit Bridgeport public housing community to proactively engage in making their neighborhood a healthy and safe place to live.
What we’ve done: Fairfield County Funders Collaborative for Affordable Housing
Together, donors and partners addressed the challenge to ensure all Fairfield County residents had access to safe, stable, healthy and affordable housing in communities of opportunity.
From 2006-2017, the Fairfield County Funder Collaborative for Affordable Housing, increased the supply of affordable housing by building the capacity of nonprofit housing developers. As a regional community funder, FCCF united 29 funders and helped build the will of municipal leaders across the county, resulting in the production of 1,100 affordable housing units, an increase in production among collaborative members of more than 300%. Collective investments of nearly $5M were estimated to have impacted 5,000 low and moderate-income FC residents, created 1,400 jobs, and generated $472M in economic activity. Almost all units will be kept affordable for 30+ years.
Moving people from homelessness to housing stability, and providing needed supportive services
Preserving and increasing access to affordable housing for low income households
Creating sustainable communities of opportunity by increasing equitable access to vital resources with a focus on community health, civic health, food security, transportation and workforce development