Virtual Summer Camp!

This summer is certainly different for children due to the current COVID-19 pandemic. To give children a fun and educational summer, the Coleman Park Community Center will be providing a virtual camp. Funds raised by Neighborhood Renaissance have allowed us to provide Chrome Books for kids to participate in online activities. Subjects include global learning, math, creative art, dance, and more.

Thank you to the sponsors and instructors for making this virtual summer camp possible.

Digital Vibes
PrimeTime of Palm Beach County
Dreher Park Zoo
Florida Fishing Academy

Virtual Summer Camp 1 Virtual Summer Camp 2 Virtual Summer Camp 3

Funder Recognitions

We THANK Bank United for their $10,000 grant in support of our work to develop affordable homes and to provide community support designed to help low- and moderate- income families and individuals to prosper.  The economic impact of COVID-19 will only exacerbate the need for more affordable homes as the gap between wages and housing costs further widens.   We greatly appreciate your continued partnership and support…your generosity is needed more than ever!

Benefits of Affordable Housing

Access to affordable housing is essential for a community and its residents. Improving the quality of life for residents leads to better health, adequate jobs, financial stability, security, and diversity. Many families and individuals cannot meet the high costs of renting an apartment or buying a home. Therefore, affordable housing can change this and brings many benefits. 

Increased Spending Power: Families that use most of their income towards housing often have insufficient funds remaining to meet other essential needs, such as healthy food, medical insurance, and health care. When faced with these tradeoffs this can threaten the family and their children. However, these factors are much different while living in affordable housing. As a result of lower monthly rent payments or mortgage costs, families can use their income on quality foods and medical care which puts less stress on families. 

Job Creation: Developing, constructing, and preserving affordable housing will lead to the creation of new jobs. During the construction of affordable housing units, the local economy benefits directly from the funds spent on materials, labor, etc. Construction jobs and contractor roles can put unemployed people to work who are skilled in those areas. 

Effects on Children: Growing up and living in a stable and quality home has many effects on children. The effects on children who are brought up in a stable affordable home are greatly impacted by this. Children who are raised in a quality living space (such as affordable housing) are more likely to thrive in school, move on to higher education, and earn more money as adults. However, those who are not living in a quality environment face other challenges. According to a Boston College study, living in poor housing conditions along with residential instability is likely to result in behavioral issues in children who live in this type of environment. These conditions can cause stress, depression, and other negative effects. 

Promotes Diversity: Affordable housing developments promote diversity by developing communities that unite different socio-economic, educational, professional, and cultural backgrounds. This will result in increased exposure and interaction of people from various backgrounds, increase cultural sensitivity, fairness, and tolerance. In addition, this can also create an opportunity to become more knowledgeable of other backgrounds and can work together to create change in the community using various perspectives.

Other important factors:

  • Affordable housing is the key to reducing intergenerational poverty and increase in economic mobility.
  • Increased access to affordable housing is the most cost-effective strategy to implement to reduce childhood poverty in the United States. 
  • Improves mental and physical health 

Thank You Synovus Bank!

Thank you Synovus Bank

Thank you Synovus Bank for your $7500 grant in support of our efforts to build stronger economies and diverse communities by investing in homes that are within the financial reach of working families.

Model Block Programs

Lincoln Road Model Block Program Initiative

Why is this Community a Priority at this Time?

There are a few concentrations of housing problems dispersed throughout the City of West Palm Beach, but the Coleman Park, stands out in terms of high concentrations of substandard housing, low owner occupancy, vacant lots, and blight intersecting with concentrations of minority populations. Driving through sections of the Coleman Park neighborhood reveal unsightly vacant lots used for dumping debris. These same vacant lots are difficult to develop because they are very small and shallow.  Many of the existing homes are located on narrow streets with limited parking and poorly maintained. Compared to other areas in West Palm Beach, home developers bypass the Coleman Park for more lucrative sites. Home values for existing homeowners remain low relative to other nearby areas leaving residents with little hope for increasing equity for home improvements or building wealth.   In addition to the lingering effects of low property values due to historical redlining, it costs more to live in a market rental property in Coleman Park than it does to own and occupy a home.

The Program

Creating opportunities that enable Coleman Park residents to reach their full potential requires a comprehensive approach including home ownership, which is the cornerstone for creating a stable single-family neighborhood. Working in partnership with residents, the City of West Palm Beach and the Community Foundation of Palm Beach and Martin Counties, Neighborhood Renaissance is spearheading a Model Block Program for Lincoln Road in the Coleman Park neighborhood. The Model Block will include four new affordable homeownership opportunities through single-family new construction on vacant lots, rehabilitation of five to six owner occupied homes, street beautification and code enforcement. The goal of a concentrated effort on this one block is to eliminate blighted vacant lots, increase homeownership and investment, and, contribute to the economy by bringing more working families into the neighborhood. Often times new homeowners in the neighborhood encourages existing owners to invest in their own homes since they see increasing market values.

Resident Involvement

We will facilitate dialogue with Coleman Park residents focused on bringing neighbors together to share different views, ideas, and experiences. In the process, people begin to develop leadership skills, build stronger relationships and learn the importance of working together. This is necessary for any long-term change to occur.  The residents will be able to use these new skills to address crime, dumping and code enforcement issues in their community. The idea is to share concerns and look for ways to make things better in the Coleman Park community.

The Success of the Northwood Model Block Program in West Palm Beach

The redevelopment of the Northwood neighborhood and its business corridor required an integrated, comprehensive approach using the nationally known best practice “Model Block” program.  This approach incorporated a two-year planning process that resulted in three new mixed-use zoning districts with new urban design standards that immediately paved the way for new commercial and residential developments.  Within a span of five years Neighborhood Renaissance in partnership with the City of West Palm Beach achieved the following:

  • Constructed 35 new homes and rehabilitated 14 properties as well as assisted 65 families to purchase homes at a total investment of $8 million.
  • Administered a business district beautification, security, and small business incentive program, and developed new urban design guidelines for the Northwood Village.
  • Developed within the business district, the Renaissance Courtyard, the first mixed-use residential and commercial project to be built in the Northwood Village, currently owned and managed by Neighborhood Renaissance; recipient of the Federal Home Loan Bank of Atlanta EDGE award.
  • Provided small business training and assistance to approximately 150 low and moderate-income entrepreneurs resulting in over 115 jobs for low-income residents.
  • Completed streetscape improvements and landscaping for both the business corridor and the residential areas as part of the redevelopment of the neighborhood.
  • Received several national best practice awards in community development.

This Model Block approach was replicated at a smaller scale in two other neighborhoods: Royal Poinciana in Boynton Beach and Westgate in unincorporated West Palm Beach.

Model Block Initiative 3Model Block Initiative 1