Finding Home: Voices of the Baltimore Housing Mobility Program

brhc2A young, African-American woman sits nervously at her dining room table inside a modest, two-story house. The front of her house is adorned with rosebushes and a wraparound porch. On the inside, old, slightly stained carpeting spans the floors and few furnishings decorate the walls.

This is Kimberly’s story. Kimberly is one voice from the Baltimore Regional Housing Mobility Program. Stefanie DeLuca and Jennifer Darrah have just published a paper based on over 100 interviews with participants in the Baltimore Housing Mobility Program:

“LIVING HERE HAS CHANGED MY WHOLE PERSPECTIVE”: HOW ESCAPING INNER-CITY POVERTY SHAPES NEIGHBORHOOD AND HOUSING CHOICE

The paper highlights:

  • How the Baltimore Mobility Program has helped over 2,000 low-income African American families (now 2,400) move from high-poverty, highly segregated neighborhoods in Baltimore City to low-poverty, racially mixed neighborhoods throughout the Baltimore region.
  • Parents who participated in the mobility program raised their expectations for what neighborhoods, homes, and schools can provide for their children and themselves.
  • Parents who participated in the mobility program report new preferences for the “quiet” of suburban locations,and strong consideration of school quality and neighborhood diversity when thinking about where to live.
  • Housing programs should employ mobility counseling.

In conjunction with the release of these critical findings, the Century Foundation produced a multimedia piece that tells some of the participants’ stories here.

 

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