In my short career in social housing, I have noticed that many programs revolve around helping work able households improve self-sufficiency. There is a national program (FSS) just to do that in coordination with housing programs. However; housing providers often serve a large number of senior and disabled households. While there are a number of great examples… Read More How the Dutch Lead the Way in Senior Housing Innovation
I visited the city of Mannheim Germany in October to speak with both city officials and social housing staff about affordable housing in this mid-sized German city. I met with Arno Knobel who works for the city of Mannheim. He focuses his attention on strategic issues including urban renewal and long term planning. For instance… Read More Social Housing in the German City of Mannheim
A city tour over homelessness sounds like something that could be exploitative. That was my first thought. How could a company or a person consider taking a group of people on a tour about the misery of homelessness? Even more, how can a company think that it is ok to charge a fee? The answer… Read More Sleeping on the Street is an Art- Being Homeless in Berlin
Woonbond is a large tenants rights organization based in Amsterdam. The company considers itself the voice of renters from throughout the country. More than half of the residents in social housing are somehow connected to Woonbond through its membership and advocacy. That’s more than 1.5 million members or 53% of all tenants in Holland. Woonbond’s… Read More Woonbond: Representing the Tenants of the Netherlands
Communism is over. Now what? I can imagine that is what the leaders of Estonia thought as the massive structural changes begin to take place in the country. Estonia more than many other former Warsaw Pact countries pulled this transformation off while maintain a steady increase in the quality of live for years on end. But,… Read More Communism is Overin Estonia- Now What?
It is February and the streets are quite compared to the summer. However; there are a number of tourists bustling around Barcelona taking in the sunshine, wine, food and culture. The city altered itself into one of the most dynamic and stylish capitals in the world. Year-round the city is alive, it is always on… Read More Hiring Homeless to Give City Tours
Article: The Finnish Homeless Strategy Summarized by Josh Crites Overview Finland recently completed a second phase of a national program intended to dramatically reduce homelessness. What is different with the Finnish approach is the country came together to create a national strategy with a total effort on using the Housing First model. The summary report… Read More Strategic Planning and Homelessness: Finland, the UK, the USA and Sweden
A question that needs to be asked by social housing providers both in the USA and Europe is what role do we take in regards to those who are completely homeless. At first thought, the answer seems simple. Social housing providers will do anything possible to help reduce the number of people who are homeless. … Read More Social Housing’s challenges in housing homeless in Europe.
I am truly lucky for this year abroad researching and looking at social housing and homeless programs in Germany and the EU. The world is increasingly more global and sharing of best practices can not be limited to country borders. As I researched homeless programs in Germany, I came across the name of a Dr.… Read More Housing First in Europe- 5 Short Summaries of Test Sites
What to do when a tenant owes money to the housing authority? The question is typical and we face it on a regular basis. Many times the money spent to collect is more than the actual debt. In other situations, the tenant is in a bad situation and we want to work around it. If it is… Read More Work for Repayment of rent arrears? An example from Hungary.