Sep 23, 2019
Have you been to the 14th street corridor of Washington DC lately? It is a destination spot for upscale restaurants, furniture stores, galleries and newly constructed apartment buildings. If you venture to a leafy side street you will find a courtyard that leads to N Street Village, a local nonprofit whose programs and advocacy serve 2000 homeless and low-income women annually year. Many of these women grew up in the shadows of an earlier incarnation of 14th Street, devastated by rioting after the assassination of Martin Luther King and in the clutches of poverty and the crack epidemic for decades. As N Street Village CEO Schroeder Stribling, explains, when these women arrive, they are looking for what we all need: a supportive community, safe and affordable housing, and attention to mental and physical health challenges. It is Schroeder’s mission to provide a “radically welcoming” environment. Schroeder and the N Street Village staff and volunteers manage an array of facilities and services in a fashion that Schroeder describes as emergency room triage. The bigger picture, she reminds us, is that housing solves homelessness. We just need to create the political will.