Voice is a small, but dynamic housing organization, controlled by tenants on the board, and supported by Uptown community reps and professional advisors. It has a proud history, informed by experience in issue advocacy, community development and property management. In 2019, Voice of the People was in transition and strategizing about the future.
To realize the organization’s vision of a vibrant mixed-income community in the next fifty years, Voice embraces some basic principles that will guide advocacy, programs, and services.
- While affordable housing alone may be enough for some residents to attain a higher quality of life and new level of self-sufficiency, most will still have challenges where they can benefit from support services. To assure social sustainability for affordable housing, support services should be available to tenant-families and all residents.
- While owners enjoy fleeting rewards for financing affordable housing, the long-term economic challenges to property management can be more daunting. Voice, and all providers of affordable housing, must continuously seek greater capacities, enhance revenues, and realize cost efficiencies — so that they can viably continue. This is what is required for economic sustainability of affordable housing.
So this is Who We Are in 2020
Voice is an affordable housing provider.
Voice owns and manages property in Uptown, directly and with partners (14 buildings with 214 units). We intend to be the best “community partner” we can be by helping property management do its job well, and assuring long-term affordability in what is now a high-cost, reinvesting community.
Voice is an organizer of residents and leader in affordable housing policy.
The organization has a rich history of organizing residents around concerns regarding their apartments, buildings, and blocks. Voice will deliver these “Legacy Services”, do it better, and begin to bring low income tenants and local owners together on areas of common concern. The organization’s staff will also take on leadership roles with local and city-wide coalitions. Affordable housing is a human right — which remains the unifying theme of our work.
Voice is a new provider of support services to residents.
Affordable housing is an essential need, but it is not the only need to address for tenants to improve the quality of life for themselves and their families. Voice is beginning to connect people to opportunities based on their needs, interests, and goals — starting with Voice owned and partnership properties. Voice encourages volunteerism in support of the many great organizations and institutions of Uptown.
And, Voice wants to support owners of affordable housing long term.
In order to maintain and welcome affordable and mixed-income residents into their properties, owners need assistance too. Whether owners are for-profit or non-profit, Voice intends to advocate for sensible policies and provide program services so that owners can stay in the community without selling out to the highest bidder.