Non-profit

Funders for Housing and Opportunity

Website:

www.housingisopportunity.org/

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)

Project of:

New Venture Fund

Location:

Washington, DC

Type:

Left-Leaning Funding Collaborative

Funders for Housing and Opportunity is a left-leaning funding collaborative formed in 2018 by nine of the largest left-leaning grantmaking foundations in United States. The organization is a project of the New Venture Fund, a left-of-center project incubator and funder. The organization focuses on funding affordable housing, health care, and racial-interest programs at left-leaning organizations and local housing projects and alliances. The organization’s members include the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Ford Foundation, and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. It has funded over $13 million in projects at left-leaning organizations including the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, the Alliance for Housing Justice, and the Center for American Progress. [1] [2]

Background

Funders for Housing Opportunity was formally launched in 2018 as a project of the New Venture Fund. The organization was an outgrowth of an informal stakeholder group of grantmaking foundations that came together in 2016 to discuss more funding for affordable housing projects. In 2018, the organization was formally launched as a coalition of nine foundations including some of the nation’s largest funders of left-leaning projects. The nine members of the organization are the Annie E. Casey Foundation, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the JPB Foundation, the Kresge Foundation, and the Melville Charitable Trust. [3]

The program director leading the collaborative is Jeanne Fekade-Sellassie, who previously worked at other housing-related groups including the Campaign for Human Development, NeighborWorks America, and the National Foreclosure Mitigation Counseling Program, where she was senior vice president of national initiatives. [4] [5]

Jennifer Angarita is the senior program officer for the organization. She previously worked for BlueHub Capital, a designated Community Development Finance Institution, and as the coordinator at the AFL-CIO’s National Worker Center. [6]

Funders for Housing and Opportunity’s focus areas include providing funding for housing projects as well as to promote left-leaning affordable housing and racial-interests policies. The organizations funding is premised on the fact that more affordable housing will advance left-progressive ideologies on issues including health care and climate change. [7]

Funding

Through Funders for Housing and Opportunity, grantmaking foundation members provide funds to various left-leaning programs to promote left-leaning affordable housing, healthcare, environmental, and racial policies. Organizations funded include small local and state-level housing alliances as well as national left-leaning multi-issue policy groups such as the Center for American Progress and the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. In one instance, the organization provided a grant of $100,000 to “add a racial equity lens” [8] to guidance from the department of Housing and Urban Development. [9]

Other organizations funded by the Funders for Housing and Opportunity collaborative include the Center for Community Change, Race Forward, Policy Link, the Alliance for Housing Justice, Arch City Defenders, JOIN, Louisiana Fair Housing Action Center, Daily Planet, Virginia Poverty Law Center, Heading Home Minnesota Funders Collaborative, Housing Families First, National Housing Trust, the Eviction Lab, Street Roots, Urban Strategies, Partnership for Housing Affordability, Poverty and Race Research Action Council, National Fair Housing Alliance, Welcome Home Coalition, National Low Income Housing Coalition, The Funders Network, and the Council of Large Public Housing Authorities. [10]

References

  1. “Our Work.” Funders for Housing and Opportunity. Accessed August 8, 2021. https://www.housingisopportunity.org/our-work ^
  2. Axel-Lute, Miriam and Simon, Harold. “New Money on the Block: Funders for Housing and Opportunity.” Shelterforce. March 15, 2018. Accessed August 8, 2021. https://shelterforce.org/2018/03/15/new-money-on-the-block-funders-for-housing-and-opportunity/ ^
  3. Axel-Lute, Miriam and Simon, Harold. “New Money on the Block: Funders for Housing and Opportunity.” Shelterforce. March 15, 2018. Accessed August 8, 2021. https://shelterforce.org/2018/03/15/new-money-on-the-block-funders-for-housing-and-opportunity/ ^
  4. Axel-Lute, Miriam and Simon, Harold. “New Money on the Block: Funders for Housing and Opportunity.” Shelterforce. March 15, 2018. Accessed August 8, 2021. https://shelterforce.org/2018/03/15/new-money-on-the-block-funders-for-housing-and-opportunity/ ^
  5. “About Us.” Funders for Housing and Opportunity. Accessed August 8, 2021.  https://www.housingisopportunity.org/about-us ^
  6. “About Us.” Funders for Housing and Opportunity. Accessed August 8, 2021.  https://www.housingisopportunity.org/about-us ^
  7. “Our Work.” Funders for Housing and Opportunity. Accessed August 8, 2021. https://www.housingisopportunity.org/our-work ^
  8. “Our Work.” Funders for Housing and Opportunity. Accessed August 8, 2021. https://www.housingisopportunity.org/our-work ^
  9. “Our Work.” Funders for Housing and Opportunity. Accessed August 8, 2021. https://www.housingisopportunity.org/our-work ^
  10. “Our Work.” Funders for Housing and Opportunity. Accessed August 8, 2021. https://www.housingisopportunity.org/our-work ^
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