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Organization: Northfield Housing and Redevelopment Authority, Michele Merxbauer, Director.
The following information may be cited or quoted as long as the source is accurately mentioned and the words are not taken out of context.
Posted: Jan. 27 2010,21:54 If you wrote this report, you will find a button here that you may click
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Postal address of organization/institution

801 Washington Street, Northfield, MN 55057

E-mail address of organization/institution


Website address of organization/institution


Telephone of organization/institution


PRIORITIES: All of the organization's domains of culture of peace activity


TOP PRIORITY: The organization's most important culture of peace activity


PARTNERSHIPS AND NETWORKS: What partnerships and networks does your organization participate in, thus strengthening the global movement for a culture of peace?

The HRA has a strong web of partners and networks.  We work very closely with Three Rivers Community Action, Inc., the local Community Action Program, on most of our housing development projects.  Greater MN Housing Fund, MN Housing and Finance Agency and the Department of Employment and Economic Development are also close partners on our building projects.  HUD (Housing and Urban Development) is also vital to our partnership and funding.  These resources all require income limits on the households that will purchase or inhabit the units that are constructed; fair housing for all, and the importance of safe, secure housing is vital to the goals of the HRA.  The HRA also works in partnership with Rice County and the City of Faribault.

ACTIONS: What activities have been undertaken by your organization to promote a culture of peace and nonviolence during the ten years of the Decade? If you already made a report in 2005, your information from 2005 will be included in the 2010 report.

The HRA firmly believes that all people deserve to have a home; this is very different than everyone deserving to OWN a home.  The reality is, not all people are financially capable of, or responsible enough, to own a home.  Therefore, safe and secure rental property that can fit the needs of the household is vital.  The HRA continues to work to provide housing for all types of household in Northfield, with the hopes that a person may be born, grow up, rent a low cost apartment, upgrade, purchase, and retire in the same community.  Additionally, with the drastic increase in foreclosures, the HRA wanted to provide a place for a family with children and a dog to rent in Northfield, so they may stay in their community rather than move away.  Trying to provide as much stability as possible in a time of flux is important to the overall health and vitality of a family, and the HRA strives to provide this with the town homes for rent on Elianna Drive.

PROGRESS: Has your organization seen progress toward a culture of peace and nonviolence in your domain of action and in your constituency during the second half of the Decade?

This is difficult to answer.  The rental ordinance has been a source of contention within the community.  “Not in my backyard” has been a prevalent argument and the stigma associated with rental property is hard to overcome.  This has created hard feelings in the community that the HRA may need to discuss more in depth.

OBSTACLES: Has your organization faced any obstacles to implementing the culture of peace and nonviolence? If so, what were they?

Every community struggles with the notion of “not in my backyard.”  Low-income housing and rental property is a great idea-on the other side of town.  This mentality is prevalent in Northfield, as well.  The HRA faces the stigma of only helping “poor people” and creating housing divisions that some feel are destined for dilapidation and crime.  Please note: this has never been the case with any HRA development.

PLANS: What new engagements are planned by your organization in the short, medium and long term to promote a culture of peace and nonviolence?

1. Providing large rental property options for households facing foreclosure, with the hopes to keep them in the community rather than moving away.
2. Creating and developing a housing division that promotes healthy living, energy efficiency and sustainability.
3. Rehab of foreclosed and abandoned homes, with the focus on energy efficiency and healthy living.
4. Promoting energy efficiency and healthy living rehab options that is affordable to the middle class homeowners in Northfield.

GLOBAL MOVEMENT: How do you think the culture of peace and nonviolence could be strengthened and supported at the world level??

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Organization: Northfield Housing and Redevelopment Authority, Michele Merxbauer, Director.

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