The Herald News: Sometimes it takes more than just money to solve a social issue, especially when it comes to one as complex as homelessness. Innovative ideas that have been turned into reality are making a difference locally, throughout the state, and across the country.
RAND Corporation: America spends more on health care than any other nation in the world. Yet from birth to old age, Americans live shorter, sicker lives than people in most other wealthy countries.
A two-year research project at RAND adds some weight to a theory that might explain why. It found better health outcomes in countries that spend more on social safety-net programs like child care subsidies or old-age benefits—even when they spend less on hospital stays and medical tests.
Health care alone, in other words, can only go so far to promote health. Evidence has been accumulating for years that where and how people live plays at least as important a role in how well, and how long.
The Architect’s Newspaper: The San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles has a reputation as a quintessentially suburban enclave. But, as the inner-city areas of Los Angeles have begun to embrace the hallmarks of traditional urbanism—increased housing density, fixed-transit infrastructure, and a dedication to pedestrian space—the valley has found itself parroting those same shifts in its own distinct way.
Fast Company Co.Design: Designed by Brooks +Scarpa, The Six offers housing and support services to one of the city’s most vulnerable populations.
Architect Magazine: The Six, a new affordable housing project in Los Angeles’ MacArthur Park neighborhood, is, at first glance, a bit of a formal puzzle. As seen from the east, with its giant opening into a courtyard, the newest building for the Skid Row Housing Trust looks like a big white Möbius strip, a beguiling sequence of balconies, stairways, and overlooks. Yet all this aesthetic complexity serves a very important purpose: The building’s 52 below-market-rate apartments are reserved for disabled veterans, and the scheme, from local architects Brooks + Scarpa, is in fact a carefully crafted system for fostering a sense of community.
AIA: Eschewing the mold of traditional shelter models by emphasizing group and social spaces, this 42,500-square-foot housing project provides 52 units, support services, and rehab for formerly homeless disabled veterans and individuals in Los Angeles’ MacArthur Park section.
USC News: Project will explore ways to reduce the gap between the needs of L.A.’s chronically homeless and existing housing and support service options
LA Weekly: By nearly every metric, Los Angeles has the worst homelessness crisis of any city in America. According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, there are more people suffering from chronic homelessness in L.A. than anywhere in the country, and their number is growing at a faster clip than those in New York City.
Having struggled with mental illness her entire life, Evelyn was homeless on and off for 20 years. She occasionally found employment during periods of wellness, only to lose her job again during an episode of illness. When living on the street, Evelyn isolated herself from her adult children so that she wouldn’t burden them with her difficult struggle to survive. “Mental illness can be invisible because you look fine,” said Evelyn. “People can’t see how sick you really are.”
Evelyn was referred to Skid Row Housing Trust’s permanent supportive housing a year and a half ago. Not only does Evelyn now have a safe and stable home, but also a team of onsite staff that work collaboratively to help her address the underlying mental health conditions that led to her being homeless. “If the property manager at my building doesn’t see me for a day, she notices,” said Evelyn. “She’ll stop by my apartment or check-in with my case manager. Everyone is watching out for me.”
For the first few months after she moved into permanent supportive housing, Evelyn rarely left her home because she didn’t trust that it would be there when she returned. Now Evelyn participates in support groups, spends time with her children and grandchildren, and volunteers twice a week at an outreach center for women that helped her while she was homeless.
Your donation will help Skid Row Housing Trust create more homes for men and women experiencing homelessness and increase the supportive services that help residents like Evelyn heal, reconnect, and succeed. By 2020, the Trust will build or renovate 1,200 homes in Los Angeles, and all of them will have on-site staff and programs that help our residents break the cycle of homelessness. We are sincerely grateful for your continued generosity and encourage you to invest in permanent homes and support – the key ingredients to ending homelessness for good.
Give online now at skidrow.org/give.
KCRW Press Play: More than 27,000 people are homeless in Los Angeles. The problem is getting worse. In a special live event, Madeleine Brand looks at how we got here, what at-risk people are doing to keep off the streets, and what big ideas exist to effectively tackle the crisis.