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News Release
Project Turnkey to Date as of 04-22-2021
Project Turnkey to Date as of 04-22-2021
Oregon Community Foundation Awards $6.2 Million to Washington County to Shelter Vulnerable Community Members (Photo) - 04/22/21

Oregon Community Foundation Awards $6.2 Million to Washington County to Shelter Vulnerable Community Members

Project Turnkey helps catalyze first year-round shelter for Single Adults in Washington County

Hillsboro, Ore. – April 22, 2021Oregon Community Foundation (OCF) today announced Washington County has been selected to receive a Project Turnkey grant of $6.2 million for the acquisition and conversion of a 60-room motel in Hillsboro, Oregon. Through the pandemic, the property will serve in part as a COVID-respite shelter for seasonal and migrant workers and others needing safe shelter, and predominantly as a stable shelter for people experiencing homelessness. This will be the first year-round shelter for single adults in Washington County, which will add to the county's existing sheltering capacity.

Community organizations – Bienestar and the Urban League of Portland – have partnered with Washington County and will help ensure that programs, services and referrals are culturally relevant to meet the specific needs of underserved populations.

“With help from Project Turnkey, this collaborative effort will enable some of the most vulnerable members of our community to safely move forward on their path toward one day having permanent housing,” said Washington County Board Chair Kathryn Harrington. “We are grateful to the Oregon Legislature and Oregon Community Foundation for this funding. We also appreciate our partners at the Urban League, Bienestar and the City of Hillsboro for helping to make this project a reality.”   

In addition to the $6.2 million grant, Project Turnkey-Hillsboro is leveraging operational, capital and service funding from Washington County. “Our community is facing concurrent crises around homelessness, COVID-19 and affordable housing,” said Josh Crites, Assistant Director, Washington County Department of Housing Services. “We also understand that communities of color have been historically overrepresented in our homeless population and disproportionally affected during the pandemic. The ability to partner with Oregon Community Foundation, Bienestar and The Urban League around Project Turnkey-Hillsboro allows our county to bring forth a swift solution for the most pressing issues our communities are facing today.”

“Bienestar’s mission is to build housing, hope and community for the well-being of Latinx, immigrant and all families in need,” said Nathan Teske, Executive Director, Bienestar. “Bienestar is thrilled to partner with Washington County Housing Services to help advance equity as we further fulfill our mission with support services for Project Turnkey-Hillsboro. We’re proud assist some of our most vulnerable community members to become sheltered and receive services to achieve housing stability.”

Some key benefits of Project-Turnkey-Hillsboro include:

  • Capacity for more staff to help more people move from crisis to stability.
  • Culturally specific services provided by Bienestar and The Urban League of Portland.
  • Safe accommodation for up to 60 individuals with some rooms reserved for those impacted by COVID-19.

“Black and Brown communities around the state are experiencing a crisis within a crisis as the effects of systemic racism are magnified in this pandemic,” said Denetta Monk, Director of Housing Programs, Urban League of Portland. “The Urban League is pleased to expand our culturally-specific model of service to support Washington County residents. For this important first step, our team stands ready to mobilize services and take action that leads to solidifying equitable access to safe, stable, and affordable housing.”

Located at 622 SE 10th Ave. in Hillsboro, Oregon, Washington County anticipates use beginning very quickly, with plans to open a block of rooms to the most vulnerable community members. Longer term, Washington County will work with the City of Hillsboro with input from the broader community regarding the best options for affordable, permanent supportive housing.

Since Project Turnkey’s inception, OCF has been working with urgency in collaboration with a diverse statewide advisory committee to execute an equitable review process of all applicants.

Each communitys needs are unique and the Project Turnkey Advisory Committee continues to center both community and equity in its consideration process, ” said Megan Loeb, OCF Program Officer, Housing. The Project Turnkey Advisory Committee enthusiastically supported the funding for Washington County because of their holistic approach in partnership with community agencies to provide culturally specific programming.”

OCF has been studying Oregons dual crises of homelessness and affordable housing for two years, beginning with research commissioned from ECONorthwest, Homelessness in Oregon” which provided statewide analysis of the disproportionately large homeless population in Oregon. The first property was announced in Ashland, Oregon, in February 2021 and Project Turnkey has now reached a double-digit milestone — in just three months – with 10 grant awards deployed to date. Project Turnkey is on pace to complete 18-20 projects by the June 2021 deadline set by the Oregon Legislature. For a complete list of awardees, please visit Project Turnkey online.

About Project Turnkey

The Oregon Legislature allocated a total of $65 million for Project Turnkey for the purpose of acquiring motels/hotels for use as non-congregate shelter for people experiencing homelessness or at-risk of homelessness. Two discrete funds were provided by the state: one totaling $30 million to be awarded in counties and tribal communities impacted by the 2020 wildfires; and one totaling $35 million for the remaining 28 counties in the state. Oregon Community Foundation is administering both funds through an application and selection process, with guidance from an Advisory Committee of state, local, and community stakeholders. For more information, please visit Project Turnkey online.

About Washington County Housing Services

The mission of Washington County’s Department of Housing Services is to provide a continuum of affordable housing options that promote community strength. For more information about Project Turnkey-Hillsboro, please visit: www.co.washington.or.us/projectturnkeyhillsboro. For more information about Washington County Housing Services, please visit: https://www.co.washington.or.us/Housing/

About Oregon Community Foundation

Oregon Community Foundation (OCF) puts donated money to work in Oregon – more than $100 million in grants and scholarships annually. Since 1973, OCF grantmaking, research, advocacy and community-advised solutions have helped individuals, families, businesses, and organizations create charitable funds to improve lives for all Oregonians. Impactful giving–time, talent and resources from many generous Oregonians–creates measurable change. For more information about OCF, please visit: oregoncf.org.

 

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