Dear friends and partners,
I and the whole Miami Homes For All team are hoping you and your loved ones are safe. It is a time of great uncertainty and anxiety for everyone. Still, I know you have also been thinking about those among us who are the most vulnerable and impacted by this public health and economic crisis.
MHFA's mission is to end and prevent homelessness in Miami-Dade. We envision a community where everyone has a safe and stable place to call home. But this crisis is growing so fast that it could drive many more residents into homelessness.
There are over 250,000 households in Miami-Dade County earning less than $35,000 per year AND that are paying more than they can afford for their rent or mortgage. That's about 35% of all the County's households. These are the folks, including vulnerable youth, who are most in need of the work that is drying up right now in our biggest employment sectors, like hospitality and construction. If they are still working, they are putting in overtime at Publix, delivering our food on Postmates, taking our vitals when we go to the doctor, and making sure basic government functions like waste collection continue. In sum, they are at a much higher risk of losing income or getting sick.
The good news is, there are solutions within our reach to address our new reality. MHFA has been reaching out to our partners to
consider the new local, state and federal policies that we need now. These include better baseline protections for renters, meaningful cash assistance for those hit by the crisis, and public incentives for deeper and longer affordability in new residential development. As we engage in this research and discussion, we would love to hear from you. We’re in this together, and if we want to ensure the safety and well-being of one third of our county, we will need to activate quickly and coordinate our actions as much as possible.
Through our youth homelessness initiative, MHFA will continue serving as the backbone to The HOMY Collective: Helping Our Miami-Dade Youth.
HOMY’S Youth Access Points (find them
) are open
and available to youth. They are working closely with the Continuum of Care, led by the Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust and our community’s housing programs to assist any youth in need. Young people can connect virtually and over the phone to receive services and referrals to housing programs. Here is a
with updates regarding what HOMY is doing to address COVID-19.
MHFA itself is a small organization, but we will also be looking inward at how we can do our part to
elevate the work and voices of those who have been hardest hit. Our own employment opportunities will reflect the value we place on those who need us the most.
For now, I would like to ask you to
join our mailing list at the bottom of the page
and follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter at @miamihomes4all and @homy_305.
We will be posting updates and holding conversations through those media – please join us. We welcome anyone to reach out to us with their thoughts, questions and ideas. We need to align ourselves as much and as quickly as possible in preparation for the ongoing challenges we are going to face.