Submitted by Adele Loomis on

Lidisis Mejia immigrated to Brownsville, Brooklyn from the Dominican Republic last year. Today, she she says her move was “the best decision I’ve ever made.”

Lidisis wanted to build a brighter future for herself and her two children, but once she arrived, she quickly saw that it would not be easy. Though Lidisis is a college graduate and worked as an ESL teacher in the Dominican Republic, her experience did not help her land even entry level positions in the United States. “I was nothing,” she says.

Submitted by Jake Maguire on

There's a lot going on at Community Solutions, from our national effort to help 75 communities end chronic and veteran homelessness to our local efforts to help whole neighborhoods turn around complex issues like failing health and chronic unemployment. As if that weren't enough, our consulting team is engaged on five different continents right now, helping communities all over the world develop smarter, more data-driven approaches to solving complex social problems.

Check out the latest in this new video:


Submitted by Adele Loomis on

When Brownsville resident Keon Treadwell graduated from City College of New York in 2012, he expected to use his degree to find better employment prospects. However, his job search didn’t unfold as planned. Despite perusing newspapers and preparing for a job with the NYC Department of Sanitation, Keon found himself stuck in prolonged unemployment. On top of his employment frustrations, tragedy struck: his mother passed away, leaving him to care for his grandmother alone.

Submitted by Jake Maguire on

Community Solutions Board Member and longtime advisor, Paul Romer, was named Chief Economist of the World Bank on Monday.

We salute Paul for his groundbreaking contributions to economics and community development, as well as for his thoughtful work to support our own efforts to end homelessness and concentrated poverty by helping communities learn to solve problems in smarter, more collaborative ways.

Submitted by David Thompson on

Mind. The Gap.

There’s a staccato to it that immediately takes me back to England, my original home, a place I haven’t lived in for over 10 years now. I can hear, quite clearly, the kindly encouragement to ‘Please mind the gap between the train and the platform’ as your train pulls into any London Underground station.

Wise words by the way, as some of the gaps can get pretty big - up to a foot at Bank Station on the Central and Northern lines (it’s a great long curved station).

Submitted by Adele Loomis on

When you first meet 21-year-old Quaming Boatwright, his love for fashion quickly becomes apparent. No matter the season, Quaming never misses out on the chance to express his style, which is why you may see this Brownsville, Brooklyn resident sporting a blue collared shirt peppered with small white hats and bowties or staying warm in a silver studded leather and wool jacket.

But Quaming’s eye for beautiful arrangements isn’t superficial. He dedicates himself to putting his best foot forward, a trait helping him make a strong entrance into New York City’s competitive workforce.

Submitted by Alanna Vaughns on

For 44% of Brownsville, Brooklyn’s working age adults, the road to steady employment can seem almost hidden. Thousands of local residents - even those qualified for low-, mid-, and high-level positions - are still unable to find jobs despite their best efforts. Submitting applications online, visiting employment centers, and talking to potential employers in-person leads to a story many in Brownsville are too familiar with - basic job search tactics repeatedly yielding poor results.

Submitted by Alanna Vaughns on

Iona Holmes moved to Brownsville, Brooklyn over 25 years ago with her three young children. At first she was nervous, unsure of what to expect from her new neighbors and how to make it as a single mother. But Brownsville quickly became her home.

Submitted by Alanna Vaughns on

Keito Gray has dedicated his career to helping youth involved with the criminal justice system find work and positive, productive paths forward. Now, as a Community Based Organization Liaison and Youth Advocate Employment Specialist for the Center for Employment Opportunities, Keito is working in Brownsville, Brooklyn to lay the groundwork for a neighborhood-based model for job readiness and placement for local ex-offenders, parolees and ex-convicts.

Submitted by Adam Gibbs on

Over the last 18 months, communities participating in our Zero: 2016 initiative have proven time and time again that, if the right people are at the table with the necessary tools for the job, no challenge is too great nor too complex to overcome. We’ve also made huge progress together: participating communities have helped more than 53,000 Americans leave homelessness for permanent housing, and four communities have ended veteran homelessness entirely!