Congratulations to the 2019 Awards of Excellence Winners!
The National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO) recently awarded 24 prestigious 2019 Awards of Excellence to 20 housing and community development organizations for creating innovative programs that stimulate positive change in their community.
The 24 award-winning programs were selected by regional juries from a pool of 207 Awards of Merit recipients. The winning programs must improve resident outcomes, resolve problems, and be replicable by organizations of similar size. They must also produce tangible results such as cost savings, enhanced productivity, improved client services, and better service coordination. These Award of Excellence winners represent the very best work being done by housing and community development agencies nationwide.
We’ll be providing more details about them in 2020.
The Administrative Innovation category recognizes innovative methods in areas such as maintenance, community relations, and interagency cooperation.
Community Solar Gardens, Sustainable Energy Use
The Public Housing Agency of the City of Saint Paul entered into a 25-year community solar garden agreement that saved $112,000 last year.
Do More With AmeriCorps
The East Greenwich Housing Authority partnered with AmeriCorps to create tools for successful tenancy, eviction prevention, community resource, awareness, and an enhanced social media presence.
Online Section 8 Annual Recertifications
In 2018, the Everett Housing Authority brought their annual Section 8 recertifications online, leading to quicker, more convenient and efficient experiences for residents and caseworkers alike.
Rent Increase Request Process Improvement
The King County Housing Authority improved customer service and provided better tracking of local renting trends by developing an online rent increase system, a rent increase facilitator, and an automated workflow and notification process.
The Affordable Housing category recognizes programs for homeownership, public/private partnerships, and innovative financing.
Woven House and Creekview Plaza II (AVS56)
The Cook Inlet Housing Authority developed the Alaska Village Senior 56 (AVS56), a mixed-tenancy development, comprised of three buildings that bring affordable, independent living opportunities to east Anchorage.
When an opportunity arose to transform a vacant office tower into high-quality and affordable apartments and knit a long-ignored neighborhood back together, Metro West Housing Solutions (MWHS) saw a way to provide Lakewood’s residents with 152 units of affordable housing while leading the way in revitalizing a community.
Through critical public-private partnerships, the Housing Opportunities Commission of Montgomery County created a self-sustaining property and increased the number of affordable units in one of the top communities in the country for low-income youth to achieve upward mobility while building a new public park for the community.
New Hope Housing Harrisburg
For more than 25 years, New Hope Housing Inc. has worked with collaborative partners to help people mend their lives and recover their dignity by providing affordable, beautiful housing for adults living alone on very limited incomes. Harrisburg is their eighth property in Houston, and their first mixed-use development.
The Community Revitalization category recognizes the innovative use of programs in areas such as economic development, neighborhood preservation, and creative financing.
Olive Meadow, developed by National CORE, is the first on-site phase in the revitalization of the larger Arrowhead Grove Neighborhood (formerly known as Waterman Gardens) and is part of a service-rich, master-planned community that supports educational attainment, economic mobility, and improved health through education, wellness, and social service programs.
Village on Shields Major Rehabilitation
Housing Catalyst preserved 285 affordable apartment homes by purchasing and rehabilitating a property in dire need of repairs and upgrades.
When an opportunity arose to transform a vacant office tower into high-quality and affordable apartments and knit a long-ignored neighborhood back together, Metro West Housing Solutions (MWHS) saw a way to provide Lakewood residents with 152 units of affordable housing while leading the way in revitalizing a community.
“See Something, Say Something" Safety Program
The Houston Housing Authority (HHA) collaborated with local partners to implement a viable crime prevention strategy called “See Something, Say Something,” which allows tenants to feel safe and live comfortably within their public housing communities.
The Project Design category recognizes new housing design, housing modernization, enduring design, and landscape design in affordable housing projects.
Liberty Community Plaza
The Liberty Community Plaza, developed by the Los Angeles County Development Authority, is a 20,000 square-foot community center designed to house multi-purpose rooms for community activities, as well as county offices and rooms reserved for military veterans’ programs.
Village at Westerly Creek 3
The Aurora Housing Authority (AHA) is in the final phase of replacing the physically and functionally obsolete public housing development, Buckingham Gardens (BG). The final phase is the Village at Westerly Creek 3, which consists of fifty family rental units and 24 one-bedroom/one-bath senior rental flats.
Through critical public-private partnerships, the Housing Opportunities Commission of Montgomery County created The Lindley, a self-sustaining property and increased affordable units in one of the top communities in the country for low-income youth to achieve upward mobility while building a new public park for the community.
West Union Square
The Cincinnati Metropolitan Housing Authority and Colerain Township partnered to revitalize this blighted area and develop the West Union Square, a beautifully designed, innovative, senior housing with an abundance of amenities.
Wheatley Park Senior Living
Developed by the San Antonio Housing Authority, Wheatley Park Senior Living is the second phase of the final redevelopment phase of the obsolete and deteriorated Wheatley Courts. The new development provides 80 units of public housing, project-based voucher units and affordable units in a single, three-story, two-color tone, U-shaped building that offers modern high quality, energy efficient, one and two-bedroom apartments at an affordable price.
9th E. Lofts at Bennion Plaza
The 9th East Lofts Apartments at Bennion Plaza is a 68-unit Housing Authority of Salt Lake City development with low income (54) and market-rate (14) units located in the East Central Community Council District of Salt Lake City, UT. It is the first building in Utah to receive the Energy Star Multi-Family High Rise Certification.
Resident and Client Services
The Resident and Client Services category recognizes the innovative use of programs such as special activities for children, families, and the elderly, anti-drug programs, social services, and self-sufficiency.
SHINE Mentor Program
The Housing Authority City of Yuma’s SHINE Mentor Program is a positive solution to otherwise unsupervised after-school hours where high school students are statistically prone to commit crime and violence. It provides free college credit, as well as mentor and leadership training in a community that was formally known as a criminal hub.
NBHA Parenting Club Paint Night
To decrease the stigma of accessing mental health treatment, a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in private practice who accepts Medicaid visited the Housing Authority of the City of New Britain, and conducted a Paint Night for members of their Parenting Club. The housing authority provided babysitting and dinner to make it a family event.
Youth Advisory Council
The purpose of the Thomaston Housing Authority-Youth Advisory Council (YAC) is to create partnerships between youth, communities, and youth-serving organizations while at the same time developing life and leadership skills. The Thomaston Housing Authority-Youth Advisory Council carries out community-based initiatives and/or activities from a comprehensive youth development approach.
sayYes!/CHAMPS Youth Development Program
The City of Wichita set out to further youth development and fight childhood hunger in Wichita by applying to be a Cities Combating Hunger through Summer and Afterschool Meals Programs (CHAMPS) city and creating the "say Yes!" program. Since 2017, the City of Wichita Housing Authority has sponsored nine different meal sites in Wichita, serving over 10,000 meals to area youth in need.
SAHA Walking School Bus
In an effort to address the issue of young children without school bus access walking to school without adult supervision, the San Antonio Housing Authority created a Walking School Bus, which coordinates volunteers to walk with a group of children to and from school on a structured schedule or planned route.
Framing Program-Persons Experiencing Homelessness
The Housing Authority of Salt Lake City partnered with state and local government and the local community college to create a construction framing program that would be offered to single individuals experiencing homelessness. Twelve people were selected for the program, and eight graduated the course and obtained employment.