Housing Matters Awarded Community Engagement Grant from Uplift Central Coast

We’re delighted to announce that Housing Matters won a $30k Community Engagement grant from Uplift Central Coast. Uplift Central Coast is a growing coalition powered by Central Coast residents working together toward a shared vision of a diverse, inclusive economy built by and for the region’s residents. Housing Matters was one of seventeen organizations chosen as a recipient across our six county region and the only organization in Santa Cruz County to receive the award. The planning grants are intended to create an inclusive economic development process with a focus on equity, sustainability, job quality, economic competitiveness and resilience.

Housing Matters will engage local members of the unhoused community to gather their thoughts about the future of economic development in Santa Cruz County and how that development can best benefit low-income individuals and families to reduce the likelihood of loss of housing. The project will be overseen by Mer Stafford, Housing Matters Chief Impact Officer and Andrea Feltz, Housing Matters Community Conversations Program Manager who will coordinate the project’s activities. 

Housing Matters, along with the other Community-Based Organization grant recipients, will support Uplift Central Coast in reaching out to disinvested communities to gather information about barriers, provide opportunities for the local economic development and obtain first-hand stories from community members.

The process centers on equity, sustainability, job quality, economic competitiveness, and resilience while seeking to lift the barriers to economic opportunity for historically disinvested communities. With input and assistance from the grant recipients, the Uplift Central Coast Coalition will design a comprehensive plan for how to allocate resources on a state level.

This program will begin with community outreach to people experiencing or at risk of becoming homeless through one-on-one interviews. Surveys will be conducted throughout the program to inform organizational best practices and will be reported. 

We look forward to working with Uplift Central Coast and their partners to build engagement with diverse and underserved communities on the Central Coast!