by David Levine, President/CEO

In the closing chapter of his book Evicted, the Harvard sociologist Matt Desmond makes this observation: “Residential stability begets a kind of psychological stability, which allows people to invest in their home and social relationships.”

His insightful words inform much of work at GSH. Our supporters, stakeholders, staff and residents understand that by providing long-term housing to even one struggling family, we are creating greater stability in our neighborhoods and community.

Our work is truly the pebble in the water: we are creating the ever-widening circles that touch so many more people.

This week, Mary Paden published a summary of US Census demographic and socioeconomic information about our service area along the Richmond Highway Corridor. Mary shows the differences to be found here by income, wealth, health outcomes, crime incidents, ethnicity, and education.

So, for example, life expectancy is shorter by six years for those living in Hybla Valley v. Fort Hunt. (Across all of Fairfax County, the variation in life expectancy is thirteen years).

All of this is good and informative information. It helps us to understand how we can create a stronger community from our housing.