Attention Homes Apartments

Action Alert: May 18th Planning Board Hearing
Show your support for the Attention Homes Apartments in the following ways:

  • Write a letter in support of the project and send to council@bouldercolorado.gov AND boulderplanningboard@bouldercolorado.gov
  • Attend the Planning Board Hearing on May 18th, 5PM, 1777 Broadway St.
  • Educate your friends, family, and neighbors about the project

Talking Points / Statement of Support for Attention Homes Apartments Supportive Housing for Transition Age Youth:
1440 Pine Street, Boulder, Colorado

Attention Homes, the First United Methodist Church, and Gardner Capital are developing a supportive housing community for 40 transition age youth (18-24) who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness. It is based on the Housing First model, which is a proven approach to ending homelessness. It will provide residents with stable housing and age appropriate supportive services. It’s a preventative measure – one that will seek to prevent chronic adult homelessness and save our community money over the long term, as well as putting youth on a path to independence and self-sufficiency.

Benefits
The proposed Attention Homes Apartments development offers a wide range of benefits to Boulder’s homeless population, to the city and to neighbors of the project.

  • Nobody in this community wants to see people homeless; and while many feel that it isn’t our responsibility to address it, wishing it away doesn’t make it go away.
  • Attention Homes Apartments is based on the national Housing First model. This is the proven approach to ending homelessness. Residents are placed in housing first, but they also receive critical access to services addressing employment, education, substance abuse, mental and physical health concerns, access to benefits, and family reunification.
  • The model is based on providing permanent housing for vulnerable and at‐risk homeless people first and then helping them realize long‐term stability rather than while they are living in emergency or temporary housing. It is a permanent solution to residents’ homelessness, rather than a stop‐gap, emergency solution that only provides a place to sleep for a night.
  • A recent study in Minnesota showed that for every homeless youth that becomes financially self sufficient, taxpayers save almost $250,000 in avoided social service costs.
  • The same study showed that if just 1 in 5 homeless youth become financially independent adults, communities would “break even” on the cost of providing supportive housing.
  • A home provides stability and normalcy, but most importantly, it restores a sense of dignity, it provides hope – these are lives worth saving.
  • The project will increase the number of permanent housing units available to Boulder residents who have suffered from chronic homelessness, a critical component of Boulder’s ten‐year plan to end homelessness.
  • We recognize the Housing First model represents a shift in thinking (no precondition of treatment, services not required, serving the most in need), but the results speak for themselves:

– Over 90% of Attention Homes’ shelter clients voluntarily participate in services
– Over half (54%) of residents in youth-focused supportive housing successfully move on after two years

Attention Homes Apartments is aligned with Federal, County and City Priorities to prevent and end homelessness such as:

  • “Fostering Connections” – Federal foster care reform legislation which provides for extended foster care benefits to youth aged out of care at 18 years of age.
  • “Opening Doors” – the Federal Strategic Plan and Coordinated Community Response Framework to Prevent & End Youth Homelessness by 2020.
  • “Pathways Home Colorado” – Colorado’s statewide plan to prevent and end homelessness.
  • Boulder County 10 Year Plan to End Homelessness
  • Boulder Valley Comp Plan 2015 survey, which ranked “affordable housing” as a top community
    concern within the city and county of Boulder.
  • Boulder County Homeless Systems Management Board (formerly known as the 10 Year Plan Board).
  • City of Boulder’s Homelessness Strategy Framework and System Design.

Attention Homes has an opportunity to make a lasting difference in the lives of homeless youth.

  • A Housing First, harm reduction and trauma-informed care approach allows for a youth-driven and tailored service plan without time and age restrictions.
  • Non-time-limited supportive housing will allow homeless transition age youth the time and flexibility to receive the affordable housing and age-appropriate support services necessary to safely transition to adulthood and independence.
  • A culture of moving on allows stable tenants who no longer require on-site services to transition to another affordable apartment.

The team developing this project is experienced and deeply committed to its success

  • The First United Methodist Church of Boulder, the owner of the land, is a founding member of Attention Homes.
  • Gardner Capital Development specializes in the development and operations of affordable housing through tax-credit financing.
  • Attention Homes has provided life changing services to over 10,000 youth in crisis – in Boulder – for over 50 years.

The proposed building provides tremendous community benefit

  • Micro apartments for forty homeless young people (ages 18-24 at time of entry) transitioning out of homelessness or exiting foster care.
  • On site offices for case managers, employment counselors, and other service providers.
  • New administrative offices for Attention Homes, a local nonprofit that has been providing services to the Boulder community for over 50 years.
  • Retail/commercial space for a job training social enterprise

Experienced case managers and clinicians will provide client-centered, strengths-based case management coupled with employment and career development, independent living skill support, substance abuse/ mental health counseling, family intervention strategies, and an array of individual and group activities.

Located close to transit, schools, jobs, Attention Homes will also provide 24-hour staffing; secure bike storage; and an on-site car share program.

Attention Homes has a proven track record of providing life-changing resources to youth in crisis for over fifty years in the City of Boulder and, has the support of a broad range of the community, including elected officials, community leaders, faith groups and neighborhood activists.

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