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This CD has exclusive new tracks by Bruce Springsteen & Pete Seeger, Jon Bon Jovi, Mario Frangoulis, Buffalo Tom, Natalie Merchant, & more in collaboration with currently or formerly homeless musicians on benefit CD to fight homelessness.


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The global economic crisis of 2008-2009 reminds us if the interconnectedness of economic issues across sectors, across national boundaries, across economic class. The solution to something as complex and intertwined with so many issues (healthcare, education, employment, environment, markets, race, pubic policy, cultural attitudes) as homelessness, will not be solved by one person, organization or even country. It will take a community.

In the past Give US Your Poor hosted a Community Action Forum which brought together all sectors of Greater Boston using open space facilitation to create links and complement existing efforts through innovative partnerships.

Cross sector partnerships require organizational buy-in and trusted individuals brokering the partnership who understand the needs and culture of each organization in each sector. Each sector has such resources to bring to bear on the issue of homelessness. Government, academia, and non profits may have a more evident relationship to the issue. But corporations are integrally connected too: hospitals, real estate, industry requiring “unskilled” labor, financial industry, and construction to name a few.

Corporations need to get in the game to a greater degree and unleash the innovation potential they have to create new products that serve the poor, don’t harm the environment and make money (e.g., cheap, environmentally sound, attractive housing, from reused storage containers (40’ long by 8’ wide by 9’tall). There’s revenue potential and it can provide tens of thousands of inexpensive homes to permanently house people. Sound crazy? It’s happening, click CNN link.

Lastly, there needs to be more collaboration among stakeholders within each sector. Non profits are often competing for the same foundation or government funding, or for mindshare from legislators and the public. Collaborating can save time, energy, money and bring greater effectiveness in service and messaging.

This is true too in the government and for profit sectors; government officials across departments and across cities and states will do better to align. Homelessness touches departments of health and human services, transportation, education, housing, etc.

All sectors benefit when homelessness is decreased and ultimately ended. We are collectively a better community when we know that the basic human needs of food, housing, medical care are being met for all of us. It improves the tax base, the political base, and the moral base.

Resources for Collaboration

Tripartite Partnerships for Homelessness
(Give US Your Poor, by Lea Payne & John McGah, 2002)

Greater Than Conference: New models of partnership between corporations, non-profits, and governmental organizations

How to Make Collaboration Work: Powerful Ways to Build Consensus, Solve Problems, and Make Decisions
(David Strauss & Thomas C. Layton, 2002)

Partnership Matters: Current Issues In Cross-Sector Collaboration
University of Cambridge, Program for Industry, Issue 3: 2005