Urban Hope is a 501(c)(3) community development corporation committed to the holistic health of the East End of Richmond. The primary focus of Urban Hope is to partner with low-income families who seek affordable rental housing and/or homeownership. Urban Hope oversees the rental and homeownership processes from beginning to end. Staff and volunteers supervise the acquisition, construction and renovation of affordable housing, provide financial counseling, and support qualifying families as they continue to seek to thrive in, stay in, and lead in their community. Practical and emotional support is provided through connected neighboring and trauma-informed financial counseling – both of which play an integral role in the Urban Hope model. Urban Hope is working in the geographic area of the East End. Through Urban Hope's support, especially in a rapidly changing neighborhood, affordable rental housing and equitable access to homeownership can be the needed stability for a family to realize opportunity gains in education, health, and economic flourishing.
Financial Literacy- MoneySmart class
Urban Hope provides a unique financial literacy program to any clients who desire to grow their financial health. The trauma-informed approach was developed by our Director of Housing and Family Services after her own participation in other programs always fell short of understanding her journey with her money. The class is offered monthly, with individualized coaching in between monthly sessions, and covers a range of skills and topics, but always focuses on the client's goals and commitments to themselves. We also provide food and childcare for the class every month.
Affordable Housing- Rentals
In order to address the growing and most urgent need for stable housing for those making 20-50% of the Area Median Income, Urban Hope works hard to secure rental properties throughout the neighborhood to preserve affordability and build towards a mixed-income neighborhood. As real estate prices increase significantly, rental prices threaten the housing stability of many neighbors in the East End, and as has been proven over and over again, housing instability or housing cost burdens above 30% also cause less educational attainment, negative health outcomes, and often loss of jobs. Urban Hope provides safe, quality, affordable housing to those living on extremely low-incomes. We acquire and develop these properties with our social impact investors who lend us their capital at a 2.5% return.
Affordable Housing- Homeownership
Urban Hope was founded as a response to the local families that wanted to have an ownership stake in their community, but struggled to access home ownership on low incomes, with difficult credit histories, lending discrimination, and other barriers. While our primary focus has become rentals now, we still are eager to support families who seek home ownership and want support to repair credit, stabilize in a rental first and then partner with us to buy their home from Urban Hope at well below market prices to immediately enjoy the equity and wealth building that can come with home ownership.