News & Events

Empowering Our Renters Through Resident Services

07/03/14 at 09:16 AM by Jillian Hanes

Did you know that Neighborhood Housing Services provides 283 low-income families with a safe, affordable place to live within the Boise-Nampa MSA? While our goal is to help more Treasure Valley residents achieve sustainable homeownership, we realize that people need a supportive and affordable place to live while they learn how to properly care for a home and build their credit.  Thus, Resident Services is a growing part of NHS’ continuum of services and programs – empowering our renters with the tools and knowledge to be able to secure a home of their own one day.

NHS’ Approach to Resident Services

The mission of our Resident Services Program is to build a supportive community and promote self-sufficiency of our residents living at the Gateway Crossing, Davis Park, Stewart Avenue, and Northwest Pointe apartment communities. 

Our Resident Services Coordinator along with a handful of AmeriCorps VISTA members spend time getting to know our residents. Whether it’s going door to door, organizing community meetings, or handing out anonymous surveys, our crew is committed to finding out what the residents need and how we can empower them to thrive in life. 

Our Residents

NHS services apply to over 500 residents on a monthly basis. Our residents are low-income families representing over 20 countries and native languages.  NHS is proud to serve such a diverse population, and we strive to offer services that will help residents of any age or culture become more engaged within the community. 

Ivy, one of our current residents, has definitely stepped up her involvement within her apartment community, and is making a difference.   Several months ago, Ivy wanted to volunteer for some of the Resident Services classes and activities, but she wasn’t sure where to start. By showing her commitment to volunteerism within her community, she worked her way up to become a Resident Leader and has lead 5 activities within her complex – including running the Preschool Program. Ivy has also driven multiple women –  many who are unable to drive – to get the resources their families need around town. Her willingness to help her fellow residents is a testament to the supportive environment that NHS attempts to set through our Resident Services Program. 

Services NHS Offers to Our Residents

Unlike the average landlord, NHS looks for ways to help our residents progress in life. We provide basic needs for the children through our summer lunch program and winter clothing drive, and we also offer our renters monthly and weekly classes on the following topics: 

  • Healthy eating habits
  • Affordable Care Act compliance and how to access the Health Exchange market
  • Parenting classes
  • CPR and First Aid
  • English as a Second Language (ESL) instruction
  • TechLab – teaching STEM education and computer coding to children 

Summer Highlights

While NHS residents will be busy with many of our activities, classes, and programs this summer, we are especially excited about a few of our upcoming endeavors. 

  • Successful Renters Program will hold its first session in July. This program is designed to teach new resident families hands-on maintenance and instruction on apartment appliances. Many of our residents are brand new to this country and do not know how to operate even the most basic household appliances. They will learn the proper use of these appliances, how to regulate the temperature, and even how to make homemade, cost effective and safe cleaning products.
  • Boise Young Professionals Jefferson Street Community Garden Volunteer event will take place on July 19th. BYP is teaming up with Stein Distributors’ Budlight to sponsor a garden makeover of NHS’ resident-led community garden.  Volunteers will build a shed, picnic tables, and compost bins, and put in mulch walkways. Anyone is welcome to volunteer. Sign up here to join in the fun and meet new friends! Twitter followers can find us under the hashtag #dogoodhavefun  #keepamericabeautiful
  • National Night Out is scheduled for August 5th at our Northwest Pointe and Gateway Crossing apartment communities. This annual, nationwide event promotes police-community partnerships, crime prevention, and neighborhood camaraderie. Our residents always look forward to this event, and we will update you with more specifics on it over the next month.

Empowered, Educated, and Engaged Residents

Our goal is not to keep the same renters for decades, but to empower them to move toward the American Dream of sustainable homeownership. Our programs and activities are designed to educate our residents in basic home skills, finance, and networking – giving them more opportunities to improve their quality of life.  Though we are still developing our Resident Services Program, we have already seen residents, like Ivy, choose to support their neighbors by becoming engaged volunteers. 

Resident leadership and resident-led programs are the next step in our Resident Services progression. We believe that today’s NHS resident leaders will be tomorrow’s homeownership association and community leaders – educating, empowering, and engaging more Treasure Valley residents to work toward securing a place of their own to call Home. 

 

For more information about our Resident Services Program, upcoming events, or to volunteer, call or email, Emily, our Resident Services Coordinator at 258-6229 or epohlman@nhsid.org

Please visit our new website: www.nwboise.org