By Greenwich Sentinel
Impact Fairfield County (“Impact FFC”) recently held its first Impactful Conversation of the 2023-2024 grant year on the topic of “No Place Like Home,” addressing the urgent and increasing needs of housing-insecure residents of Fairfield County. The dynamic panel discussion at the Darien Library featured Impact FFC Grantees Building One Community, New Reach and The Housing Collective.
Moderated by Maryellen Frank, Co-Chair of Events for Impact FFC, Anka Badurina, Executive Director of Building One Community (“B1C”), Kellyann Day, CEO of New Reach, and David Rich, CEO of The Housing Collective, shared how they are dealing with the challenges of the housing system and how Impact FFC Grants are helping to meet their goals.
With its 2022 Impact FFC Grant, New Reach was able to expand its eviction prevention services in the City of Bridgeport by hiring an additional case worker to assist more families each year. Combining high-quality social work with legal services, families served by New Reach will avert eviction, obtain legal representation, gain access to entitled benefits, and receive necessary healthcare. “As New Reach continues its mission to make homelessness rare, brief and one-time, Impact’s grant came at just the right time as we have seen demand for our services skyrocket post-Covid,” said Day.
B1C is seeing changes in its constituents, as more immigrants without a direct connection to the community are moving to the area and need more assistance establishing housing, work and legal support. With their Impact FFC Grant in 2020, near the onset of Covid, B1C was able to focus on its capacity development and establish a leadership academy, providing training and development at all levels of their organization. “We’re training the future leaders of philanthropy,” said Badurina, “while also building out our ability to serve the increasing number of people in need of our services.”