Advocating for Change
The demand for affordable housing options for adults with autism and other disabilities in Howard County is rapidly growing. The HCAS Housing Committee has spent more than two years researching supportive housing models from across the country that could be adapted to address this pressing need. This process led HCAS to identify the intentional, intergenerational community model as an approach that could bring inclusive, affordable housing to Howard County. The model has been used successfully to support child welfare-involved populations in award-winning communities such as Bridge Meadows in Portland, Oregon, where it’s demonstrated effectiveness in increasing housing stability and reducing social isolation.
HCAS is now joining with community partners to support adaptation of this innovative model for adults with autism and other disabilities, older adults, and families. We have launched a Catalyst Campaign to secure the resources, assemble the expertise and begin forging the critical alliances needed to advance this concept. Click here to download a brochure about the initiative and the Catalyst Campaign. Funds raised through the Campaign will be used to support key planning activities, including identification of a development partner, market research, and development of operational program guidelines.
We’re grateful for the support of early backers of the Campaign such as the PNC Foundation, Harkins Builders and the Health Alliance. We’re also proud to announce the newest supporter of this effort, The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation, which is making a $25,000 grant to support our planning efforts. The Weinberg Foundation is one of the nation’s leading grantmakers for vulnerable populations with a particular commitment to older adults and disabled adults. We are honored to have earned their early support for this concept.
Be a Catalyst
We’re already halfway toward our 12-month Catalyst Campaign goal of $100,000! Funds raised through the Campaign will be used to support the planning and development efforts in 2017 and 2018 that will ensure this concept advances.
We’re committed to reaching our goal of $100,000 by December 31, 2017. The Community Foundation of Howard County has established a donor fund to receive and expend Catalyst Campaign funds. Please click here to donate and support this effort.
If you have any questions about the housing initiative or the Catalyst Campaign, we’d love to speak with you. Please reach us by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or phone (410/290-3466).
Housing Initiative Named Changemaker Challenge Finalist
The Housing Initiative was pleased to be selected as a finalist for the Changemaker Challenge competition. Sponsored by the Horizon Foundation and the United Way of Central Maryland, the Challenge was designed to support innovative ideas to address some of the most pressing social challenges facing Howard County. We were honored to be among the exciting projects and committed social innovators selected for this recognition.
Housing Initiative in the Baltimore Sun and Howard County Times
We were the subject of an October 5 article in the Baltimore Sun/Howard County Times. Read about us online in The Baltimore Sun.
Community Foundation Annual Dinner Highlights Housing Initiative
More than 400 area leaders and philanthropists were in attendance on November 16 when the housing initiative was highlighted at the Community Foundation of Howard County’s Annual Dinner: A Celebration of Philanthropy. Project Director Mark Dunham shared the vision for the initiative following the showing of our short video, Stronger Together. Thank you to the Community Foundation for this extraordinary opportunity to tell our story to this important audience. You can watch Stronger Together, here.
At its heart, the Howard County Autism Society is an organization created, inspired and powered by loving parents helping their own children as well as others with autism find their place in this world. Our Board consists of a group of parents, brought together in their individual journeys through the world of autism.
There is a place for every person with autism in our world—a place of value and a place of worth. Much of the work undertaken by our organization is directed toward raising awareness and educating the general public about the complexities of autism. We believe that once people better understand autism, they are better able to welcome and support people living with autism into the greater community.