Visiting MacArthur ‘Genius’ Fellows Talk About Challenges of Poverty, Housing and Family Stability

by Vada Crosby, Christian Community Action

On April 25 at 5:30 p.m. at Hill Career Regional High School, 140 Legion Avenue, New Haven, Christian Community Action is excited to host From Compassion to Action: The Road to Hope, a candid conversation about the pathway to family stability. This event is free and open to the public.
The featured speakers are Matthew Desmond, Ph.D., and Juan Salgado, recipients of the 2015 MacArthur “Genius” grant awards. The MacArthur Fellowship is awarded to individuals who show exceptional creativity in their work, and the prospect for more in the future.

Desmond is the John L. Loeb Associate Professor of Social Sciences and co-director of the Justice and Poverty Project at Harvard University. He is the author of the award-winning book Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City, a New York Times best-seller, a nonfiction finalist for the National Book Critics Circle award, and the winner of the PEN America/John Kenneth Galbraith Award for Nonfiction.
Salgado, a renowned community leader, is president and CEO of Instituto del Progreso Latino in Chicago, an organization that adapts principles of contextualized learning to equip immigrants and their families.

This discussion will raise awareness of issues affecting urban centers across Connecticut, a state where the cost of living is high, quality housing stock is limited and even families whose heads of household are employed are at risk of homelessness. Beverly Gage, a professor of 20th century American history at Yale University, will moderate.

The event’s host, Christian Community Action, a non-profit agency, has been an advocate since 1967 for New Haven families that are homeless as well as many others struggling with the challenges of poverty. CCA’s programs include an emergency shelter, transitional housing, a food pantry and a variety of support services, including job search assistance, family counseling, and workshops.

For more information, please contact Vada Crosby, CCA Marketing Associate, at (203) 780-8379 or vcrosby@ccahelping.org, or visit CCA at ccahelping.org or http://www.facebook.com/ccahelping. Christian Community Action, 168 Davenport Ave., New Haven, CT 06519.

First Cohousing Community in CT to Start Building this Spring

by Marie Pulito, Rocky Corner cohousing

rocky-corner-gh_renderingSince 2006 there has been an active group in the New Haven area working towards building CT’s first cohousing neighborhood. The group known as Green Haven finally won zoning approval in the town of Bethany last June for their project and officially bought the 33-acre former dairy farm in September.
The neighborhood will be called Rocky Corner after the historical name for that section of Bethany. This corner was where the original town schoolhouse was built and where the c.1750 farmhouse still remains.

Rocky Corner will consist of 30 individual homes. Residents will share the land and a common house where community activities will take place. In this common house, meals will be cooked together and shared. An arts and crafts room will allow residents to create together. A full woodworking shop will be available to all. All rooms will be multi-functional so that the dining room can become a dancehall or theater, a lounge can be a yoga studio, a conference room can be a private music room.

All buildings will be extremely energy efficient with thick insulated walls, passive solar heat gain from the south facing windows, mini-split heat pumps as back up for heating and for cooling.

The property will be used for the community’s own growing of food; annual vegetables, orchards, berry bushes, edible yards. Sections of the property may be leased to residents who want to do organic farming.

Planned as a multi-generational and multi-economic neighborhood, people of all ages and financial backgrounds are welcome to meet us, see the land and decide if living in an intentional community is for them. Multi-generations will help the community thrive. Children will be safe to run and play in the pedestrian center. Adults will be respected for their knowledge and the skills they can teach to others. We are applying for affordable status for 9 of the 30 homes so hopefully these homes will be subsidized by the state.

If you are interested in learning more, contact Marie Pulito (203)393-1245, www.rockycorner.org.
Our Vision: Rocky Corner is a vibrant cohousing neighborhood. We nourish respectful relationships among our members as well as with the natural environment and the wider community.