In July 2022, the New York Times released an article titled “the housing shortage isn’t just a coastal one anymore.”
The article goes on to explain how the housing shortage has become a national issue and is impacting millions of Americans.
In this post, we’ll briefly touch on the roots of the affordability crisis before highlighting six nonprofits in NYC that do an extraordinary job at providing effective solutions to the housing crisis.
The Roots Of The Affordability Crisis
The grim news comes after a recent report revealed that the nation is experiencing serious housing underproduction with a shortage of over 3.8 million homes. And because the demand far exceeds the supply, housing prices rise, preventing individuals and families from finding affordable accommodation options. In fact, half of the people who rent in the U.S. are cost-burdened due to their rent. What’s more, the figure jumps to a staggering 83% for low-income individuals.
While the lack of housing supply started before the pandemic, it was accentuated by remote working during strict lockdowns, which saw millions change cities or look for more space. And this, in turn, spurred the demand in regions that were already experiencing a supply crunch. Add to this rising inflation and a global shortage in skilled labor and materials, slowing down new builds, and you can see why housing affordability in the U.S. has dissipated.
Unfortunately, the dire consequences of the housing crisis can be seen in the streets of major urban centers. According to a recent study, over 580,000 people sleep on the streets every night across the country. And over 30% includes families with children.
Now, while policies need to be implemented on a grand scale, some organizations in NYC are relentlessly working on expanding affordable housing options to provide an immediate solution.
Below are six incredible N.Y. nonprofits created to help cost-burdened individuals struggling to pay their rent and facing homelessness access affordable homes.
Every night, over 49,000 people sleep in NYC housing shelters.
The Coalition For The Homeless focuses on community strategies designed to prevent and end homelessness in New York City through advocacy and direct services. More specifically, Coalition For The Homeless offers 11 frontline programs to provide practical solutions that help men, women, and children overcome immediate crises.
Some of the programs include:
- Grand Central Food Program: This is the largest mobile soup kitchen in America. It was created after the tragic death of a woman in Grand Central Terminal Station due to starvation.
- Eviction Prevention: Every year, this program allows 800 households to stay in their home and avoid homelessness.
- Crisis Intervention: Provides access to emergency shelters and food.
- Client Advocacy Program: This program was designed to help long-term homeless individuals access federal disability benefits and permanent supportive housing.
- Emergency Mail Program: This program allows homeless New Yorkers to have a secure and private mailing address to receive important government documents.
- Coalition Houses: Coalition Houses offers private apartment living to 38 households.
- Bridge Building: 14 apartments dedicated to mothers who experienced trauma and need help creating a brighter future for themselves and their children.
Nazareth Housing was created with one goal: providing homeless New Yorkers with housing stability and economic mobility. The organization helped over 91,000 people in 2021 and served over 1 million meals.
Some of the vital services Nazareth Housing offers to fragile individuals and families include:
- Homelessness prevention
- Food, clothing and toiletry supplies for people grappling with food insecurities
- Financial coaching to help prevent homelessness
- Supportive housing with affordable housing accommodation
- Emergency shelters for those facing domestic violence or safety issues
- Urgent needs assistance
Habitat For Humanity New York strives to help solve the current housing crisis by building affordable homes and preserving existing ones.
More specifically, one of the ways Habitat For Humanity NYC helps is by purchasing dilapidated homes across the region and revamping them or sometimes rebuilding them so they can welcome families again.
Another initiative is through their fairly-priced (and sometimes pro bono) building repair services offered to the boards managing affordable multifamily housing, allowing low-income residents to keep their affordable homes.
New Destiny Housing provides help and support for homeless women and children who have experienced domestic violence. The nonprofit fights homelessness on two fronts: building new affordable housing to increase the supply for vulnerable populations and improving homeless New Yorkers’ access to existing housing. So far, this incredible organization has worked across ten affordable housing projects, which have allowed 297 individuals and families to access permanent housing.
New Destiny Housing’s programs include permanent housing and family support. Individual counseling, employment coaching and children’s programming are all key services the organization offers to help vulnerable mothers and their children build a better tomorrow.
Project Renewal was created 43 years ago and is now one of the largest social service nonprofits in New York. And as such, it provides an array of services, from health and job programs to housing programs. In addition to targeted job training and support for job placement, the organization supplies emergency shelters and transitional and permanent housing to New Yorkers in need grappling with a substance disorder.
Every year, the incredible work of Project Renewal allows over 3,900 homeless individuals to access a home, giving them a second chance at life.
North Node Is Here To Help
If you’re facing homelessness and need help, there are plenty of other resources you can use, including the MyNYCHA App (New York City Housing Authority). There, you’ll find all the information you need to know to apply for public housing and other programs that might help. And if you’re after the housing crisis solution hotline in NYC, hop onto the NYC Housing Resource Portal, where you’ll find contact details for a few other affordable housing organizations
Alternatively, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us. At North Node, we’re on a mission to connect good-doers and nonprofits so that they can work together to help you access a stable home and achieve a brighter future.
And if you’re a volunteer, know that without individual contributions, whether they be financial or involve giving your time, these remarkable nonprofits would struggle to provide the critical support homeless New Yorkers desperately need. Every little bit helps, so if you want to support this cause, don’t hesitate to reach out to them to see how you can assist.
2.Photo by Nazareth Housing
3.Photo by Habitat For Humanity NYC