Tim Roth, a developer for RMG Housing, at a project on Western Avenue in Los Angeles that will provide 49 units. (Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)
“Nowhere in the bible did it say, ‘Only show compassion and empathy to those you can trust.’ If we did that, we would be burying homeless people every day.” – Shannon L. Adler, Author
Homelessness is a crisis that is probably not going to be eliminated any time soon. Many organizations and community groups all over the country are on the front lines doing their best to help in so many ways.
Sadly, even when homeless men and women receive a Section 8 voucher, sometimes they still can’t access a place to live because of government housing shortages in their city. Then, when city governments do approve new housing projects, “red tape” is often a common cause for the snail-paced progress from start to finish.
In Los Angeles, an innovative partnership has risen above those types of complications. And it all began in a Hermosa Beach Jiu jitsu studio where Tim Roth, a developer of high-end townhomes, found himself sparring with Andy Guy, a supervisor at Homeless Health Care Los Angeles. Their story was featured in the Los Angeles Times in an article titled, “Building Affordable Housing for the Homeless—Without Government Help.”
As Tim and Andy got to know each other, Tim began to hear the struggle Andy was experiencing while trying to provide outreach and case management for support housing to the homeless. Thankfully, Tim didn’t just say “oh that’s too bad” and continue on with his profitable business. He stopped long enough to look into the city crisis and brainstorm about how he could help.
A third party entered the picture from the faith-community—John Cager, pastor of Ward AME Church. Cager had seen too many developers take advantage of churches in his community and was pleasantly surprised when Tim presented a 50-50 partnership opportunity to provide homes for the homeless. The final “piece” of the innovative idea fell into place when Deborah La Franchi, President & CEO of SDS Capital Group, who oversees $1B in social-impact investments, learned of the situation.
Through their partnership, they “demonstrate how the private sector, in alliance with key nonprofits and the faith community, can build housing for homeless people faster and for less than developers working through traditional government programs.”
As of this article, they’ve finished one project so far, have another one in the works, and are expecting to close another one every other month in 2021 – most between 40 and 100 units.
Kudos to Tim Roth for taking “community” seriously by utilizing his expertise to come alongside another community organization in need—which became an amazing story of provision multiplication as more and more units are being built through the 4-way community partnership.
We, at Sheltering Grace, welcome your assistance and donations for the homeless mothers and babies we serve. Please contact us at 678-337-7858 to learn how you can help. Each mother and baby will be truly grateful for your kindness.
Sheltering Grace Ministry, Ltd. is a 501(c)3 Ltd. non-profit ministry. We resolve the initial crisis of homelessness by providing mothers with a safe place to live during pregnancy. We also equip them with the tools they need to improve decision-making, enhance employment options, and increase family income to act responsibly as the head of their household. All of our services develop their self-reliance to progress to permanent independent living. Please join us in renewing and rebuilding the lives of these brave women – #Be1of5000.