A one-stop shop for housing help is now open in Detroit’s Jefferson-Chalmers neighborhood.
The Neighborhood Resource Hub, 14300 E. Jefferson Avenue, will be run by neighborhood support organization Jefferson East, Inc. in the historic Kresge Building. The 3,500-square-foot resource center is expected to help 1,000 Detroiters tap into the often complicated ecosystem of housing programs and serve as a community space.
The goal? Keep Detroiters in their homes by connecting them to assistance with their property taxes, home repairs and utilities.
“For years, we’ve heard from residents about the absolute critical need for resources and support to help longtime Detroit residents stay in and improve their homes,” said Josh Elling, CEO of Jefferson East, Inc. during a ribbon cutting ceremony Wednesday.
Derric Scott, CEO of East Jefferson Development Corp., which renovated the building, said it was important to loop neighbors into the development process.
“There are all types of challenges that we find, even in the neighborhood, that prevents the average everyday Detroiter from participating in development projects like this and being able to see, not only development happening in their neighborhoods, but be a part of that development as it happens,” he said.
Long-time Jefferson-Chalmers resident Cynthia Campbell said Jefferson East, Inc. helped her with porch repairs at the home she’s lived in since 1969. She said the hub is a welcome addition to the neighborhood.
Leaders of community organizations have long said that Detroiters lack a central place to get information and resources on housing help, ranging from ways to pay down property tax debt and avoid foreclosure to getting crucial repairs on homes.
“You really need to have someone to kind of hold you by the hand, help you navigate those resources. It’s very complex. It takes a lot of case management,” said Kenita Harris, chief operating officer of Jefferson East, Inc.
Mayor Mike Duggan also pointed to the often convoluted array of housing programs, whether it’s legal help to avoid eviction or dollars for home repairs.
“The people who are here are experts in whatever your need is and these are the kinds of resource centers, housing centers we want to build across the city,” he said.
Residents can begin scheduling appointments Jan. 18, said Harris of Jefferson East, Inc., by calling the Neighborhood Resource Hub at 313-314-6414, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.