News & Views
LGBTQ Housing Spotlight: Stonewall CDC
Happy Pride Month! In celebration, Pennrose is highlighting our incredible LGBTQ+ project partners and local community advocates throughout the month of June. We are excited to shine a spotlight on the invaluable support, services, and resources they provide within our communities.
We are wrapping up our series with Paul Nagle, an LGBTQ+ advocate and Founding Executive Director of Stonewall CDC, a New York City-based community development corporation serving the city’s LGBTQ+ older adults.
Q: To start, tell us about your organization. What is your mission and how is it reflected in the work you do?
PN: Stonewall CDC’s mission is to see New York City’s LGBTQ+ older adults in safe, welcoming housing they can afford while providing access to health and mental health services that meet their unique needs. In New York City alone, the 65+ population is projected to grow by more than 40% between 2010 and 2040, and LGBTQ+ older adults already face additional extraordinary challenges.
The innovative housing and healthcare solutions we are formulating are universally applicable to the senior housing crisis, but we feel by centering LGBTQ elders in the creation, modelling, and piloting of these programs, the community’s needs will not be ignored. We focus on two key tracks: First, building out the toolkit and services of a premier community development corporation, including housing, benefits navigation, and placement of homeless families in permanent housing; and ideating, modelling, and implementing innovative community-based housing and healthcare solutions.
Q: What inspires you to go to work every day?
PN: Our community is perfect for modelling innovative strategies. We have a shared lived experience of fighting oppression and a demonstrated history of building networks of care and support for our community when the system has failed us, as in the AIDS crisis. We have creativity and resiliency, plus many baby boomers with appreciated real estate assets, no family to care for them, and no one to leave those assets to.
We see this as an incredible community formula. It is the path we are creating for LGBTQ+ baby boomers to participate in the “Great Wealth Transfer” and help establish a lasting affordable housing legacy. Sharing our vision of the “Great Wealth Transfer” and watching people’s imaginations engage and think about the possibilities is incredible. Seeing this vision come together and grow each day makes going to work a privilege.
Q: What are your plans / priorities for this year? How will it benefit the community you serve?
PN: We have been nurturing two major projects and this is the year we intend to begin implementing them, which is very exciting. The Community Properties Portfolio is a bequest acquisition program where Stonewall CDC amassed a portfolio of properties held by the corporation in perpetual affordability, and centrally operated, in order to achieve efficiencies in house management and continuity in care.
In addition, The Stonewall Bridge program will train younger LGBTQ+ folks to become co-living “sharegivers” to LGBTQ older adults. The goal is to pay the attendants higher than industry standard and afford them the opportunity to vest shares in the equity that the portfolio is generating. The program is a contemporary solution to accomplish what multigenerational families have always done: ensure a safe, fulfilling, supportive old age for elders and support our next generations.
The projects will simultaneously provide care for LGBTQ+ seniors who have no family, a career path for younger members of the community, and a mechanism for the LGBTQ+ community to participate in the “Great Wealth Transfer” that is underway between the generations and build community legacy.
For more information or Stonewall CDC, please visit https://www.stonewallcdc.org/.