How are others responding to OppCo?
Opportunity Communities has received an enthusiastic reception among funders, intermediaries and community development non-profits.
Many local and national community development leaders have provided advice and support -- both technical and financial -- during start-up. OppCo’s founders have benefitted from an unstinting willingness of others who have ventured down this road to share lessons learned. This model clearly strikes a chord with both peers and funders: several peer organizations are considering membership. Every funder, public agency head and intermediary has suggested other non-profits they think would benefit from OppCo.
"OppCo has the potential to solve a thorny challenge for the community development field: how to combine the financial efficiency of larger scale with a meaningful grounding of the organization at the neighborhood level. The Joint Center would welcome the opportunity to learn from this experience with the goal of improving the model and helping to disseminate these findings to the broader field."
- Christopher Herbert, Managing Director, Joint Center for Housing Studies, Harvard University
"In today’s changing and challenging community development field, collaborative mergers, such as OppCo, offer non-profit organizations a promising way to survive and prosper. In this kind of joint venture, organizations can expand their geographic reach, share costs of business and staff, and yet maintain a close relationship with residents of their local service areas. Through collaborative mergers, willing and able non-profit partners can increase the scale and efficiency of their operations while preserving their community-based character, which has always been a great virtue of the community development field."
- Alexander von Hoffman, Senior Research Fellow, Joint Center for Housing Studies, Harvard University
CDCs need to continuously innovate to effectively serve their residents and be the catalyst to help make connections to opportunity. In order to do so, CDCs now more than ever need to be efficient in their operations, programs and property management. OppCo, the collaboration between TND and Nuestra, is the type of creativity, partnership and forward thinking called for in the current environment of limited resources by two organizations with stellar track records in being responsive to their residents housing and economic development needs.
- Alam Balonon-Rosen, Director, Relationship Management, Enterprise Community Partners
“CDCs are located in communities large and small across the Commonwealth working in partnership with civic, business and resident leaders to revitalize and strengthen neighborhoods. The work that CDCs undertake is challenging and diverse, requiring that each CDC and the field develop capacity in multiple lines of business. OppCo provides an opportunity for CDCs to test a new business model that leverages shared resources across CDCs while maintaining a strong local presence that is so critical to the work of non-profit affordable housing developers.”
- Joe Kriesberg, MACDC President