A national network of funders supporting strategic, innovative, and effective solutions to homelessness

Policy Framework Pillar: Thriving Communities

Thriving Communities Pillar

Through our work to pursue housing justice, Funders Together recognizes that, for generations, equitable access to housing has been denied to Black and Indigenous people and other communities of color, creating a template for discrimination and harm toward immigrants, refugees, asylum seekers, people living with disabilities, and people who identify as LGBTQIA+, as well as other historically marginalized communities. Housing injustice has been a key tool in paving the way to mass incarceration, militarized policing, insufficient health care, oppressive education systems, environmental instability, and pervasive economic insecurity.  

Our work today must therefore go beyond housing policy to embrace and accept the full breadth of needs and opportunities within our communities by approaching all our housing justice work with an intersectional lens. In order to create the housing justice future we hope to see, we must create the conditions for thriving communities where everyone has access to what they need.  

Funders Together will lead and support partners and government officials in the work to decriminalize poverty and prevent homelessness and begin to transform our communities’ health care and environmental realities.  

FTEH’s Priorities for Thriving Communities 

REFORM - Resourcing Prevention and Mitigating Harm 

Without additional resources to bolster our physical and behavioral health care systems and community-based services, our cities and states will continue to fall short of our housing justice goals and individuals and families will continue to struggle to survive. Homeless service systems are unable to keep up with needs and demand because they are filling gaps left by policymakers who have repeatedly divested from our care systems. Harmful policies toward immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers, as well as discrimination against members of LGBTQIA+ communities, are exacerbating housing instability across the country. 

To reform this reality and bolster marginalized communities’ survival, Funders Together will join partners across sectors to advocate for ample resources for health care, education, economic opportunities, and community-based services and supportive networks. We will actively pursue policy opportunities that protect the rights of neighbors experiencing homelessness and work to dismantle efforts that criminalize poverty. We will follow the leadership of people with lived experience to ensure that we’re advocating for resources and support that will enhance individuals’ and families’ safety and thriving, while dismantling harmful policies and divesting from those programs and priorities that drive insecurity. 


TRANSFORMATION - Innovative Housing Solutions for Stable and Healthy Communities 

Large businesses and the government have a documented history of compounding economic insecurity and oppression by extracting from and endangering communities and environments and then positioning vulnerable communities to live in unstable and dangerous places. Poorly maintained public and private housing, including housing that produces moderate and high amounts of carbon dioxide, are endangering our future. Increasingly extreme weather events caused by climate change — flooding, wildfires, storm systems, and extreme heat — are even more treacherous for those facing homelessness or insufficient housing stability.  

In advocating for transformation, Funders Together will support environmental and climate justice efforts as well as practices and initiatives to redress harm to the environment and proactively protect communities that are currently most vulnerable to climate change and housing insecurity. Innovative solutions, including decommodified social housing, can address systemic barriers to housing stability and environmental safety, as well as begin to redress the damage our housing market and housing stock has contributed to the climate crisis. 

Individuals and families across the United States and its territories deserve safety at home and environments that provide clean air, clean water, renewable energy, and accessible outdoor spaces for communities and connections to grow and thrive. 


Funders Together Advocacy (including, but not limited to) 



  • Engage in actions to protect the right to safe, adequate, and affordable housing for all people and non-discrimination from shelters, including new arrivals, LGBTQ+ people, young people, and other communities who are marginalized. 
  • Support a National Tenants’ Bill of Rights to stabilize rent and protect tenants’ ability to organize. 
  • Support anti-criminalization efforts at all level and protect the rights of people experiencing homelessness 


  • Promote housing within the context of a Green New Deal through robust investment in green housing and divestment in environmental extraction, particularly within communities impacted by environmental racism (in accordance with NDN Collective’s Mobilizing an Indigenous Green New Deal, page 6; and Homes Guarantee, page 18-19) 

Examples of Philanthropy’s Role in Supporting Thriving Communities Advocacy 



  • Produce op-eds or other educational media placements on the importance of upholding and resourcing best practices, along with local evidence/stories. 
  • Resource local organizers with general operating grants and/or flexible funding that can be used towards advocacy efforts related to anti-criminalization activities. 
  • Support and invest in transformational local and state ballot initiatives to structurally change the budget by reallocating funding from existing locally controlled revenue to community investment, affordable housing, and homelessness prevention for housing justice 
  • Provide flexible rapid response resources for housing justice narrative and messaging work around social housing/decommodification. 
  • Resource rest and joy for organizers and advocates who are transformational work. While some foundations are unable to engage in supporting ballot measures and other local initiatives, funding capacity for ample recovery and healing for community partners on the ground is another critical component of effective advocacy. 


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