September 20, 2017 Published in Non-Profits, Top Stories

Collaboration Of Nonprofits And Homebuilders Improves And Expands Supportive Housing In Alexandria

Pictured (left to right): Jack Gallagher (Richmond American Homes), Chip Devine (Brookfield Residential), Mayor Allison Silberberg, Anne LaFond (Community Lodgings), Lynn Thomas (Community Lodgings), Jerry Berman (M/I Homes), Kristyn Burr (HomeAid Northern Virginia).

Formerly homeless families now have newly upgraded residences in the City of Alexandria, following the completion of renovations to a Community Lodgings multi-unit supportive housing property led by HomeAid Northern Virginia. An onsite “learning center” was also upgraded, enabling families to take advantage of after school and youth mentoring programs, daily nutritious meals, and computer and English as a Second Language classes for families—setting up the children who live here for brighter futures. The ribbon cutting was held yesterday with local officials, community advocates, homebuilders and construction partners that provided labor, resources and expertise to the project. 

The renovation of the 10,446 sq. ft. Community Lodgings building in the Del Ray neighborhood was completed by a consortium of four local homebuilders convened by HomeAid: Brookfield ResidentialEvergreene HomesM/I Homes, and Richmond American Homes. The $650,000+ renovation included a complete upgrade of the property’s six existing affordable housing, as well as the reconfiguration of space to create a seventh two-bedroom unit – enabling more families to call the property “home.” Via a special partnership with local home staging company, the units will already be “home-y” when new residents move in: Staged Interior fully furnished each unit and have committed to furnishing one HomeAid project each year.

“On behalf of our entire community, I am thankful to Community Lodgings, HomeAid Northern Virginia and the many partners involved in this project,” said Alexandria Mayor Allison Silberberg. “It is a great example of how a community working together can help solve the affordable housing issue.”

An interior of the newly-renovated Community Lodgings property in Alexandria’s Del Ray neighborhood (courtesy photo)

“The impact this renovation has on our families is incredible,” said Lynn Thomas, executive director of Community Lodgings. “I grew up in affordable housing in southeast DC, and know how important it is for a low-income family to live in a nice, safe house. We are all so grateful to HomeAid Northern Virginia, the builders, and the many other supporters who made this happen.”

“The renovated property will provide housing stability for individuals and families who are transitioning out of homelessness and working toward self-sufficiency. Through collaboration with Community Lodgings, with our multiple builder partners, HANV was able to take on this large, high-impact project. This is a great example of the spirit of cooperation: local homebuilders putting aside natural business competitiveness to work together, and work with HANV, Community Lodgings and with the City of Alexandria to benefit local families and improve the local community,” said Kristyn Burr, executive director of HomeAid Northern Virginia.

HomeAid Northern Virginia builds and renovates homeless shelters and supportive housing facilities via the donated expertise, labor and resources of local homebuilders, enabling nonprofit partners like Community Lodgings to invest budget in programs and services rather than construction expenses. This project is HANV’s fourth project with Community Lodgings and is the first time HANV has organized a formal consortium of multiple builders to co-lead as joint project “Builder Captains.” The City of Alexandria, BB&T and the Virginia Housing Development Authority also contributed funds for the project.

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