November 2, 2023 by Rebuilding Together DCA
Rebuilding Together DC Alexandria (RTDCA) is a non-profit organization that is transforming homes and communities in Washington, D.C. and Alexandria, Virginia. Guided by the Seven Community Revitalization Partnership Principles, RTDCA is creating a more equitable and sustainable future for all.
From repairing homes to empowering residents, RTDCA’s impact is undeniable. By the end of 2023, RTDCA will have served over 1,000 people and made over $1 million in home repairs and modifications. But RTDCA’s work is more than just fixing houses—it’s about building thriving communities.
RTDCA’s principles guide its work to ensure that all people have access to safe, healthy, and affordable housing. We partner with volunteers and community members to repair and modify homes and advocate for housing justice.
Our own Katharine Dixon, celebrating 20 years with RTDCA, has a strong dedication to these principles, which is evident in everything she does. She is a passionate advocate for safe and affordable housing, and she is committed to building strong relationships with the communities RTDCA serves.
Principle 1: Demonstrate a commitment to safe and healthy housing
RTDCA’s work is focused on making homes safe and healthy for residents. The organization’s home repair program addresses a wide range of health and safety hazards, including lead paint, mold, asbestos, carbon monoxide leaks, electrical hazards, plumbing leaks, structural problems, and accessibility issues. RTDCA also works to educate homeowners about how to maintain their homes and keep them safe and healthy.
Principle 2: Prioritize a coordinated approach with other organizations and service providers
RTDCA recognizes that it is one piece of a larger housing and community development ecosystem. The organization partners with other organizations and service providers to provide comprehensive support to its clients.
Principle 3: Seek opportunities to further serve our community through innovation and expansion
In addition to its core home repair program, RTDCA offers a variety of community services, including repairs and beautification of community centers and schools. For example, RTDCA has improved public school gardens to support student outdoor learning programs. RTDCA also partners with other organizations to provide legal real estate planning and referrals to other public services, such as food and transportation.
Principle 4: Regularly engage with local, political, community and business leaders
RTDCA uses its platform to advocate for safe and affordable housing for all. The organization participates in roundtables, housing alliances, and other advocacy efforts. RTDCA’s expertise is sought by a variety of stakeholders, including government agencies, non-profit organizations, and businesses.
Principle 5: Demonstrate a strong understanding of the current and historical policies, practices and behaviors that create housing inequality in our community
RTDCA is committed to understanding the root causes of housing inequality. The organization educates itself, its volunteers, and its funders on these issues.
Principle 6: Build cultural competency with our stakeholders by respecting and affirming the values of the community served
RTDCA respects and affirms the values of the communities it serves. The organization uses a person-first approach to programming and prioritizes community members’ interests, strengths, and needs. RTDCA also seeks to minimize disruption to communities as it carries out its work.
Principle 7: Practice active listening in the community
RTDCA listens to the needs and interests of the communities it serves. The organization participates in neighborhood meetings, planning processes, and events. RTDCA’s services are adapted to the needs of the community, and community members are actively involved in all levels of the organization.
RTDCA’s commitment to the Seven Community Revitalization Partnership Principles is evident in its work. The organization is helping to create safe, healthy, and affordable housing for all in Washington, D.C. and Alexandria, Virginia.
As RTDCA celebrates Katharine’s 20th anniversary, and 37 years of service as an organization, let’s all commit to supporting this work. Together, we can create a region where everyone has a safe and affordable place to call home.