SETTING THE STAGE FOR A STRONG NEW YEAR
We at Mercy Housing always have had a sense of urgency about our mission. But today, with more than one-third of the U.S. population, or 95 million individuals, affected by the housing crisis and 46 million living in poverty, it is more important than ever to raise awareness about these appalling statistics and even more importantly, to provide housing for individuals and families who may face homelessness.
In 2011, we leased up more than 790 affordable homes across the country and started construction or rehab on more than 1,000 homes. Mercy Loan Fund also closed 10 loans, totaling over $17 million resulting in 921 units of affordable housing and raised $7 million in new debt capital. While we are proud of these accomplishments, we realize that it is still too small a response to a problem of such magnitude.
Mercy Housing cannot solve this problem alone. By partnering with individuals, corporations, nonprofit and government organizations we will create a solution for the housing crisis. For example, this year, Catholic Health Partners (CHP) announced the transfer of 616 affordable homes to Mercy Housing Southeast’s property portfolio (see page 15 for more information). The agreement allows Mercy Housing to continue to manage the properties as well as provide supportive resident services in communities in Tennessee, Kentucky and Ohio. These communities were established between 1983 and 2004 as part of HUD’s Section 202 program, which was created to provide housing with supportive services to very low-income people, age 62 and older. In addition, the program subsidizes rents for senior citizens so they can limit their housing costs to only 30 percent of their total incomes.
Because we believe housing is a platform for success for our residents, in 2011 we launched the Social Impact Measurement System which measures the impacts of our four priority resident program areas.
Mercy Housing is at work every day advocating for affordable housing for low-income families. A few of our successes include starting a major initiative to build relationships with members of Congress and their staff by running personalized property tours and signing on to 33 letter campaigns to Congressional and federal leaders.
We are proud of all of our accomplishments in 2011 and believe they have set the stage for a strong 2012. On behalf of everyone at Mercy Housing, thank you for your support and we look forward to working with you as we create more affordable housing and opportunities for our residents to reach their full potential.
Live in Hope,
Sister Lillian Murphy, RSM
Chief Executive Officer