City to submit project proposal: ForEveryoneHome 2-1 match-funding program looks at sustainable growth, lasting affordability

The City of Gainesville will submit a project proposal to participate in the ForEveryoneHome project to help bolster ongoing city efforts to implement innovative solutions to local housing challenges. Proposals are due March 14.


The program, funded in part by the Ford Foundation, will select three cities to participate in an 18-month technical assistance, peer learning and community engagement program that aims to develop housing policies that promote affordability and inclusive growth.

Grounded Solutions Network seeks applications for “ForEveryoneHome” initiative.

Selection to participate in this project would enable a team of housing practitioners and community representatives to devote significant effort toward understanding how other similarly-sized cities are fostering sustained growth and lasting affordability. The program emphasizes resident participation in finding housing solutions that will work for all members of the community.

“ForEveryoneHome is truly a citizen-centered program and we’re optimistic about the potential to participate,” Citizen Engagement Program Manager Anne Wolf said.

Wolf, a member of the city's Strategic Initiatives (SI) Department, will serve as the project lead for the inter-departmental and inter-organizational team comprising representation from Housing and Community Development (HCD), Alachua County’s Housing Department, the Gainesville City Commission, the Department of Doing and Habitat for Humanity.

The SI Department works to find new approaches to major institutional priorities, such as the city budget process and its strategic plan, as well as how citizens and community stakeholders engage with the city on issues of importance, such as affordable housing and food insecurity.

If selected the city and its community partners will receive 500 hours of technical assistance, advice from national housing experts, paid travel to enable and encourage peer learning and support to develop an inclusive engagement strategy.

“The city has received an outpouring of support from local organizations including the Community Land Trust, UF’s Office of the Vice President, Gainesville Housing Authority, the Alachua County Housing Authority, the Shimberg Center for Housing Studies at UF and many others,” Wolf added.“I don’t want to leave anyone out, but in essence, everyone we’ve spoken with is supportive.”

The project, uncovered by Commissioner Gail Johnson and also shared with the city by the Shimberg Center for Housing Studies at UF, is one of many local and national opportunities the city is exploring as it searches for solutions to its housing shortages and shortfalls.

When asked to reflect on the possibility of being denied participation in the program, Wolf remains positive about the prospects for the future.

“If it doesn’t work, we will continue to build partnerships with local community members, the many housing experts at UF and our city subject matter experts at HCD to understand the needs of our community and find policies and programs that support housing affordability throughout our city.”

Selected cities are expected to be notified by April 19. To learn more about the “ForEveryoneHome” initiative visit the Grounded Solutions Network webpage.

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