Our mission: NeighborWorks America creates opportunities for people to live in affordable homes, improve their lives and strengthen their communities.
What does it mean to be a mission-driven organization? A clearly defined and executed mission guides and informs, in good times and bad, and provides context for why our work matters. The pursuit of a mission motivates employees and other stakeholders, driving long- and short-term goals. People often claim they're "on a mission," but how do they deliver on it? At the end of the day, it is one of the fundamental ways we chart our course and measure success along the way.
At the foundation of the NeighborWorks mission are nearly 250 strong, healthy and prepared network organizations
in every state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. As a congressionally chartered and funded nonpartisan nonprofit, we support organizations that provide communities with affordable housing, financial counseling and coaching, training, and resident engagement and collaboration in the areas of health, employment and education.
What We Do
To ensure that our network organizations are strong and healthy in their operations, we conduct rigorous assessment before acceptance into the NeighborWorks network and every year after. We offer programs and support to help our network organizations establish and maintain healthy operations, measure the reach of their efforts, expand their program offerings to meet community needs, and move toward long-term stability and growth. NeighborWorks builds the skills, supplements the resources and amplifies the reach of network organizations so they can empower more individuals and transform more communities than they could on their own. Read an introduction to NeighborWorks America and learn more about our story of impact.
NeighborWorks America animated video
We help build strong, resilient communities by providing people with opportunities to live in safe, healthy and affordable housing.
We support our network and the broader field through:
- Grants. In fiscal year 2021, $101.2 million in grant funding was distributed from our annual core appropriation.
- Community impact. In fiscal year 2021, NeighborWorks network members reported more than $16.8 billion of investment in their communities. This level of investment is possible because for every $1 of federal appropriation we award, NeighborWorks organizations are able to attract another $102 to expand local impact.
- Technical assistance. We offer multiple grant, capacity-building and peer-exchange opportunities designed to help our members expand their work, pilot and replicate new approaches, build new partnerships, and improve their performance and governance.
- Training and leadership development. NeighborWorks America is the nation's leading trainer of community-development and affordable-housing professionals, awarding nearly 23,000 certificates in fiscal year 2021. Our offerings serve residents, network organizations and the field generally. All courses are regularly updated to reflect industry standards and current trends.
- Organizational assessment. To ensure that our network organizations are strong and healthy in their operations — and remain that way — we conduct rigorous assessments before their acceptance into NeighborWorks and every year thereafter. We also help our members incorporate evaluation into their own "ethos" through Success Measures, a NeighborWorks social enterprise that helps nonprofits and their funders measure the impact of their community development efforts and investments.
Our October 2021-September 2024 strategic plan
focuses on equitable recovery and resilience. It does so by investing for greater impact: this moment requires new ways of working, new strategies and approaches, and expanded access to resources to replicate and scale proven strategies. NeighborWorks America and the network are well-positioned to respond, not just to this crisis, but the next one as well. NeighborWorks America stands committed to its mission, made all the more urgent in this time. At NeighborWorks, we know that "home" is not just the building where we live, but also the community that surrounds and supports us, and that all deserve equitable access to opportunity.
Over the next three years, NeighborWorks will work with its network partners to respond to the continuing affordable housing crisis affecting so many American communities. In the wake of pandemic and growing movement to address structural inequities, our short-term goals and outcomes reflect the need to meet this moment, even as our long-terms aspirations for impact remain the same. NeighborWorks was chartered to create places of opportunity in communities across the country, and between 2022 and 2024 we will remain true to that mission as we focus on four specific organizational goals:
- Create, preserve and invest in affordable housing and wealth building
- Foster stronger, more equitable communities
- Strengthen the capacity and sustainability of the NeighborWorks network
- Strengthen a culture of accountability and belonging at NeighborWorks America
Race, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (REDI)
Advancing Race, Equity Diversity and Inclusion (REDI)
is a corporate priority for NeighborWorks America. In order to drive operational excellence and stewardship, REDI is used as a decisional framework to assess equity and inclusion within the organization and across our network. Our goal is to foster an organizational culture and climate that identifies, addresses and resolves inequities. Through our equity plan, we systematically and strategically identify patterns that allow inequities to exist and implement changes in our practices, protocols and policies to advance inclusive excellence.
We seek to build a culture around equity and inclusion, ensuring that diverse voices and perspectives are present, acknowledged and valued to generate strategies and solutions that guide our work. The following pillars advance our REDI efforts:
- Workplace Diversity, Equity and Inclusion: Creating an equitable and inclusive environment for people who may be different from each other and who do not all come from the same background. The differences may be (but are not limited to) those of national origin, physical appearance, religion, education, age, gender or sexual orientation.
- Workforce Diversity, Equity and Inclusion: Differences in employee characteristics including ethnicity, race, gender, age, religion, sexual orientation and ability. This process involves purposely seeking a diverse workforce, which enhances the creativity and productivity of each NeighborWorks division.
- Community Engagement: Evaluating opportunities that span NeighborWorks and the current market in order to be innovative and forward-thinking with our network (e.g., evaluation of existing and future network organizations, marketing, branding, best practices).