Real Stories

“We Got a Phone Call That Our House Had Burned Down”

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Liz Allen's house went up in flames when she was 13, and her family lost nearly all their belongings. Her mom tried to spin the following weeks as an adventure -- their family was going to stay in a hotel with a pool! But the challenges of instability eventually weighed heavy, and grief struck on a night when Liz didn’t expect it. In a new video recorded at Building Changes' "Talk It Up: Stories of Home, Lost & Found" event, Liz shares her story and talks about how her experiences relate to the advocacy work she does now.

Architect Who Experienced Homelessness Now Advocates for Thriving Communities

Architect Poppi Handy (third from left) joined her Third Place Design Cooperative colleagues at Housing and Homelessness Advocacy Day in Olympia last month. Their office regularly engages in housing advocacy.
Architect Poppi Handy (third from left) joined her Third Place Design Cooperative colleagues at Housing and Homelessness Advocacy Day in Olympia last month. Their office regularly engages in housing advocacy.
Poppi Handy joined the high school swim team so she could get regular showers while her family experienced homelessness. School was an escape for Poppi, who did well in the classroom despite many challenges. Now an architect, Poppi designs inclusive communities and advocates for policies that will help people have the resources they need to thrive. Listen to her StoryCorps "Finding Our Way" conversation with her husband, Brent.

“First We Cry, Then We Take Action”: Moving Forward After Point In Time Counts

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The number of people sleeping outdoors in King County increased by 19 percent in a year. Reports about homelessness from across the state are similarly grim, but there is reason for hope. Community members and policymakers are paying attention to homelessness and housing, and now is a great time to advocate for policies that will help end our statewide crisis.

Housing Discrimination Leaves People Out in the Cold

Kitsap County resident Carissa Daniels advocates for a proposed state law that would make it illegal for landlords to discriminate against tenants based on the source of their income. Photo courtesy Carissa Daniels.
Kitsap County resident Carissa Daniels advocates for a proposed state law that would make it illegal for landlords to discriminate against tenants based on the source of their income. Photo courtesy Carissa Daniels.
A domestic violence survivor who lives with a disability, Carissa Daniels uses a housing choice (aka Section 8) voucher to help pay the rent. She writes that when she and her daughter look for housing, they run into landlords who refuse to accept her voucher. Advocates are working to outlaw this kind of discrimination; find out how you can help!

“I Feel Like Seattle May Be Kicking Me Out”

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Law student Josh loves Seattle, but rising rent prices make him doubt whether he'll be able to continue living in the city. The lack of affordable housing is a crisis not only in Seattle, but also in many communities across the state. Do you want to live in a community where everybody has the opportunity to live in a safe, healthy, affordable home? Then prepare to take action as we head into the state legislative session, which begins on Jan. 11. We share how.
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