The social fabric of our communities is complex, made up of many different systems -- housing, schools, jobs, businesses – that are all interwoven to support our residents. When one component of our infrastructure falters, the others also begin to unravel. For example, when a community lacks jobs, there is a ripple effect. Residents must resort to commuting farther distances for better employment opportunities. They are less likely to patron local restaurants or spend time building connections with their neighbors. Their families sacrifice precious quality time together. Fewer social interactions and less economic stimulation weaken a community’s fabric.
As a community foundation, one of our most fundamental goals is to build community. Because our region clearly faces a dearth of affordable housing, much of our community’s fabric is unraveling. We have a chance to change that. But we must fight for it.
SVCF commissioned a report by Stephen Levy, Director of the Center for Continuing Study of the California Economy, to help residents engage in their city’s Housing Element update process. This is an opportunity for cities and their residents to define and implement strategies to ensure residents of all income levels have access to housing. Levy’s research also uncovered that building more housing will lead to more school funding, an important relationship between new housing and school district financial security – two critical pieces of building a strong community.
We encourage you to get involved by reading the report to learn about the Housing Element update process and how you can take part in strengthening the fabric of our communities.
If you have any questions about the report, please get in touch with Gina Dalma, SVCF Executive Vice President of Community Action, Policy and Strategy.
- Read the report: Bay Area Cities Update Their Housing Elements in 2022
- Check out the SVCF Magazine: The Fight for Affordable Housing
- Watch the video: Project WeHOPE provides lifeline to homeless community during pandemic
- Learn more about SVCF’s public policy work