The RCI Village is the first permanent, community-supported affordable housing program in Allentown. Based on the Jubilee Housing Program in Washington, DC, the RCI Village provides safe, stable, affordable housing, and the supports and connections that residents need to achieve long-term housing - and life - stability.
Our housing mission
In Allentown, many people are caught in an unending cycle between homelessness and temporary housing solutions that aren’t safe, don’t work, or don’t last. RCI Village confronts that by providing a community-centered, permanent, affordable housing initiative. We are community-centered through regular social events and activities to foster healthy relationships. We are permanent housing by offering residents long term housing needs. We are affordable housing for low-income households.
RCI Village places quality, affordable housing at the center of a web of related supports and services designed to bolster resident success and stability. We partner with Center for Independent Living, CareerLink, Literacy Center, and the Lehigh County Mental Health Program in order that residents maintain stable employment, pursue educational goals, improve their food security, or move forward with other aspects of their lives.
RCI Village currently has a total of 13 apartments (ranging in size from 1 to 3 bedrooms) at our Linden Street property. These apartments are available for any and all individuals/families exiting homelessness or who are experiencing housing instability.
Criteria: There are no restrictions or specific requirements in order to qualify for the RCI Village housing program. The main criteria for qualification is being able to afford monthly rent and the primary lease holder must be older than 18.
Apply: Any individual interested in applying to RCI Village should come to our office (1335 W Linden St, Allentown) to fill out an application with our Housing Director. Please bring proof of income and/or employment. Please plan for 30 mins to complete the application. The housing application identifies applicant’s basic info, size of household, housing needs, income/employment, and housing history. Along with that, an assets/barriers dashboard will be completed and our programs Community Agreement will be explained.
All applications are reviewed by our Selection Committee which is comprised of community partners and RCI staff. When an apartment is available, the Selection Committee reviews all qualified applicants to determine which individual/family is a good placement. Factors that go into this decision are applicant’s previous housing history, current housing needs and situation, and ability to adhere to the Community Agreement.
Availability: There are currently no apartments available. Updated 9/4/2019.
FAQ about RCI Village
Q: Is the RCI Village a Housing First program?
A: No. Housing First is a very specific model that includes intensive supports including on-site psychiatric care, medical care, and other interventions. The RCI Village is community-supported housing, which is a less intensive approach that still recognizes the need for people to live community.
Q: Is the RCI Village funded by HUD or other federal funds?
A: No, the RCI Village is funded entirely by private funding sources, such as foundation grants, corporate grants, and individual donations. Federal funds come with many restrictions that make it difficult to meet the specific needs of our community.
Q: Is the RCI Village program unique to Allentown?
A: The RCI Village is modeled after the Jubilee Housing program in Washington, DC (to learn more, visit www.JubileeHousing.org). We have adapted this model for use in Allentown, but the RCI Village reflects the main characteristics of Jubilee Housing. For 40 years, Jubilee Housing has maintained a stock of affordable, well-maintained rental housing in the Adams-Morgan neighborhood of DC, even as that neighborhood has experienced a significant economic revitalization.
Q: What supports and service partnerships are available to residents of the RCI Village?
A: One of RCI Village’s goals is to provide support to residents to help ensure long-term housing and life stability. These supports come from program staff, service partnerships, and community building opportunities. The are already organizations in and around Allentown that provide needed services for vulnerable residents, including job training programs, GED classes, early childhood education programs, parenting support groups, and financial literacy training. The RCI Village will not replicate any of these services. Rather, we will support residents in accessing, navigating, and sustaining appropriate services through partnerships with existing service organizations and agencies.
Q: How can I help?
A: We welcome your partnership and support for the RCI Village program. Please contact us if you are interested in getting involved!