Wednesday, May 02, 2012

A letter from the Affordable Housing Group:
To residents of the Elizabeth neighborhood and other concerned citizens,

With a great deal of regret, Supportive Housing Communities (SHC) and The Affordable Housing Group (TAHG) have decided to put on hold the development of the property at 333 Hawthorne Lane as permanent supportive housing.  As we had explained in the community meetings, the funding for development and operation of the proposed facility would come from many different sources.  These different funding sources must be coordinated in terms of amount, timing and conditions placed upon the prospective housing development.  TAHG and SHC have been and are committed to securing enough funds to make this building all that it needs to be for permanent supportive housing -- a credit to the community, the neighborhood and the residents. In addition, we are committed to obtaining sufficient and ongoing operating support to ensure the long-term maintenance and operation of the building. 

 Recent discussions with anticipated funding sources, taken in total, have given us concern about the amount and conditions for development and operational funding for the proposed supportive housing.   Consequently, our two groups have decided to step back from actively pursuing this development and investigate whether a different financing structure can be devised to create the stable, long-term supportive housing community that we’d envisioned.  This is the reason for the cancellation of the community meeting on last Monday evening.  The planned community meeting scheduled for May 7 has also been cancelled.

TAHG and SHC sincerely hope to restructure this proposed development to allow it to move forward.  If this happens, be assured that the Elizabeth neighborhood will be notified and that we will count on your full involvement. 

If you have any questions or comments regarding this (or anything else, for that matter), please give one or both of us a call at the numbers below.

Paul Woollard         (980)321-4737   
Executive Director
The Affordable Housing Group of North Carolina

 Pam Jefsen             (704) 335-9380, ext. 25
 Executive Director
 Supportive Housing Communities

We are appreciative of that understanding, open mindedness, and support that we have received from the Elizabeth community, including Elizabeth Community Association, Elizabeth Communities of Faith, and the Leadership Team from Elizabeth Traditional Elementary School. I hope that I will be talking with you again soon.

Paul Woollard

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Christine Dryden, a friend from neighboring Chantilly, writes:
On May 10, 35 local and regional artists will present the Third Annual Carolina Art Soirée, an art show to benefit The GBS/CIDP Foundation International. Last year, the event raised $30,000 for the foundation and sold over 100 paintings. Organized by Hannah Blanton, a Charlotte nurse and mother who was struck with the rare and severe illness in 2003, the fundraising event aims to raise awareness of Guillain-Barré syndrome, a disorder in which the body's immune system attacks part of the peripheral nervous system, often causing rapid paralysis.

The Carolina Art Soirée event will be held at Midtown’s Met Terraces, 1110 Metropolitan Ave., from 6 to 9 p.m. The reception will include live music from musician Grey Brewster, and food and drink from Vivace, Dressler’s, LaPaz, Zoe’s Kitchen, Hickory Tavern, Pisces Sushi, Delish Cakery, Penny’s Pimento Cheese, Troy & Sons Distilling and Natty Greene’s Brewing Co. Extravaganza Events, Picture House Gallery and Metropolitan are also sponsoring.  A suggested donation of $20 per person will be accepted at the door. Valet parking will be provided.  The exhibition will continue May 11 from 11 am to 3 pm. 

Participating artists include Betsy Alexander, Pam Anderson, Wendy Bilas, Laura Bowers, Dianne Britton, Curt Butler, Zan Byrd, Allison Chambers, Robbie Clair, Theresa Clark, Fonda Doerre, Christina Dowdy, Jenny Fuller, Lita Gatlin, Marcy Gregg, Chris Keogh, Heidi Kirschner, Robert Langford, Dottie Leatherwood, Kevin LePrince, Jennifer Levine, Mike Lewis, Anne Neilson, Windy OConnor, Liz Orvos, Patricia Ratcliffe, Laurie Richardson, Michelle Rivera Kosavek, Caroline Simas, Libby Smart, Gina Strumpf, Amy Sullivan, Kelly Thiel, and Helen Vanvick. The art show will also feature the work of homeless artists from Urban Ministry Center’s ArtWorks 945 program.

333 Hawthorne project on hold

The ECA writes:
Yesterday, Supportive Housing Communities and The Affordable Housing Group notified the Elizabeth Community Association that they are putting the permanent supportive housing project for 333 Hawthorne Lane on hold.  The groups asked the ECA to cancel the community meetings scheduled for yesterday and May 7.  Due to the current economic climate, a major portion of their anticipated funding is not currently available for this project.  SHC and TAHG state that it is unclear whether or not the funding opportunities will be available in the future. 

The ECA is not in a position to make further representations on behalf of SHC and TAHG.  Questions regarding their decision are best directed to SHC's Executive Director, Pam Jefsen, at 704-335-9380, ext 25.  We understand that SHC and TAHG will be sending a letter shortly, which the ECA will post on

Thank you to all of our Elizabeth neighbors for continuing to be involved and attentive to matters such as this one.  Elizabeth cares about its neighbors without a home and will continue to be part of the solution for homelessness by supporting Elizabeth's Caldwell House at Caldwell Memorial Presbyterian Church and Hawthorne Place at St. John's Baptist Church.