Civic Engagement Initiatives

When we elevate the voices of community members with lived experiences, we are better equipped to advance policies that are more effective, holistic, culturally appropriate, and sustainable. Through the Housing Alliance’s Civic Engagement Initiatives, we work to create space and platforms for individuals from underrepresented communities to take actions to impact and improve housing and healthcare policies and lend their expertise in making decisions that affect their lives and health.

Listen & Act 4 Housing & Health 

The Housing Alliance is partnering with the PA Health Access Network and its BeHeard BeHealthy PA initiative. The Housing Alliance’s Listen & Act 4 Housing & Health (LA4HH) civic engagement project will incorporate the voices of people with lived experience and expertise to make substantial positive changes in the rust belt, rural, and inner-ring suburb communities. 

LA4HH has four aims: 

  1. Train local community members on creating long lasting change in programs, their communities, and the Commonwealth, 
  2. Design local and state policies and programs to reduce the barriers to quality housing,  
  3. Champion for substantial programmatic, local, and state policy changes,  
  4. Construct tools to help community members to empower others in their communities to become leaders.  

The Housing Alliance will partner with the below organizations that serve people with lived expertise due to housing insecurity to identify various barriers, develop leaders to join regional policy councils, and participate in various civic engagement activities, such as attending a lobby day in Harrisburg.  

Annual Advocacy Days in Washington, DC and Harrisburg, PA

Advocacy Days are events in which people come together from across the state to educate their elected representatives and advocate for increasing housing resources, ending homelessness, and eradicating blight in Pennsylvania. We host Advocacy Days twice a year in Harrisburg and in Washington DC.

Home Matters Day takes place annually in the late spring in Harrisburg. For more details please visit our Home Matters Day Page.

Capitol Hill Day takes place in the early spring in Washington DC in partnership with the National Low Income Housing Coalition. Learn more about the success of our 2021 Capitol Hill Day.

Advocacy and civic engagement can be a very personal experience. Hear from our own Keena Minifield as she shares her experiences partaking in Home Matters Day and Capitol Hill Day as an advocate and then her transition to our Policy and Civic Engagement Associate.

Home Matters Day takes place annually in the late spring in Harrisburg. For more details please visit our Home Matters Day Page.

Capitol Hill Day takes place in the early spring in Washington DC in partnership with the National Low Income Housing Coalition.

PA Votes

Voting is often the first step to greater civic participation. We need people who have lived the problem to provide input into the policies that are designed to help them. 

During the summer and fall of 2020, the Housing Alliance partnered with Nonprofit Vote to collaborate with 21 community partners in the Commonwealth. PA Votes local partners engaged 2,000 people in nonpartisan voter engagement initiatives including voter registration forms and mail-in ballots. Learn more about the program in our report and in the video below where four of our community partners (Abilities in Motion in Berks County, HACE, Allentown Housing Authority in Lehigh County, and National Council of Negro Women Rankin/Mon Valley) shared how they accomplished this feat amid a pandemic.