Please consider contributing in your end-of-year giving! NMCDC made the tough decision to cancel this year’s well-loved and longstanding Missoula Outdoor Cinema program to keep our community safe; unfortunately, in doing so, we also cancelled our largest annual fundraiser. Throughout this unprecedented year, NMCDC has furthered our mission of building from community strengths to co-create a sustainable, accessible, and thriving community – and created new programs and partnerships to address emergent needs in the time of COVID-19. We’re reaching out to invite you to support the North Missoula Community Development Corporation in your year-end giving. Our staff, volunteers, and neighbors have been hard at work building relationships to generate mutual support and meaningful relationships in this time of crisis, all while maintaining our vision of an equitable community through our Land Stewardship Program, Project Westside Park support, and community organizing and outreach. What we’ve done in 2020: COVID-19 response and no-cost youth programs At the onset of the pandemic, NMCDC worked alongside neighbors to facilitate free food deliveries, establish a mutual aid hub at Lowell School, and provide free internet access to low-income youth learning from home. We held our free summer drop-in program, Kids Club, to provide affirming mentorship and time away from home for kids and families. In addition, we established Kids Study Club, which was the first in Missoula’s growing network of free “tech hubs” for young people to access computers and internet, free food, and adult mentorship. Help us spread the word! Permanently affordable homeownership While the median home price in Missoula has accelerated dramatically in the past year, particularly impacting first-time homebuyers and renters, sale prices for NMCDC’s Community Land Trust homes remain stable and represent 90% of the permanently affordable shared-equity homeownership opportunities in our community. We know that housing is a human right – not merely an investment vehicle – and continue to advocate for the equitable development and stewardship of more homes that everyday people can afford. Community Organizing In late 2019, NMCDC formally joined Common Good Missoula, a broad-based community organization comprised of 35+ institutions acting to improve our community’s health and well-being. In 2020, we sent 20 leaders to community organizing intensives and proudly helped establish the Northside-Westside CREW (Community Rising for Equity and Well-being), a group of neighbors forming a more meaningfully connected community – wherein we really know one another and everyday people have the power to act and shape the future of this neighborhood. NMCDC is also supporting organizing efforts for the development of a neighbor-led Community Center at Lowell School. Project Westside Park NMCDC recognizes that low-income families are more likely to face transportation challenges and lack of easy access to outdoor play or summer vacation opportunities. In response, we’re working in partnership with Missoula County Public Schools and Missoula Parks and Recreation to further develop Westside Park for a historically underserved population of Missoula residents. An ambitious $2.16 million project of which $737,370 has been secured, in providing green space and a state of the art playground Westside Park will improve the learning and play opportunities for children in our neighborhood and across Missoula, and increase access to outdoor spaces and healthy activities for a our community. For more information and an interactive map of the project please visit projectwestsidepark.com. Looking forward into 2021 More affordable housing opportunities – We will be advocating for more permanently affordable community land trust homes in our community, and are seeking future development opportunities so that more Missoula workers and community members are able to continue living here as housing costs rapidly rise. Additionally, alongside a coalition of community renters, homeownership advocates and people at risk of losing their housing, we will continue to advocate and act for equitable housing development and preservation of existing affordable housing. Community Center at Lowell – We will continue our support of Lowell School families and youth in developing a Community Center that meets community needs and improves access to education, social opportunities, and play. Neighborhood survey and planning – We will be updating our neighborhood survey to create a new neighbor-crafted plan for local development that is truly inclusive of people of all ages, incomes, and abilities. We are planning for commercial revitalization, return of our brew pub gathering spot, and support for pocket park development. Investing in leaders – We’re supporting everyday people in the Northside and Westside through providing mentorship, resources, and access to leadership development opportunities. Whether it’s $5 (the price of a popcorn & drink at Outdoor Cinema) or $200 (the price of a laptop a child can use to do homework at Kids Study Club), your generosity supports NMCDC in its work towards our vision of healthy neighborhoods and communities of opportunity in which people of all ages and abilities can live, work, and play. On behalf of the NMCDC board of directors, staff, and the community members we work alongside, thank you for considering NMCDC in your year-end giving, and be well.