In 2014, Cincinnati Union Bethel and The Model Group invited Christ Church Cathedral to join them in a partnership to develop and operate Cincinnati Scholar House (CSH), an affordable housing community that is modeled on a Kentucky program with a 20-year track record of success. CSH will include an on-site early care and education center for dependent children and common space for community activities and family supportive services. It is being designed to provide a stable living and learning environment for low-income single parents and their dependent children while the parent attends post-secondary classes that will lead to full-time sustainable employment. The overriding goal of CSH is to provide the opportunity for qualifying families to break the cycle of poverty and achieve transformative change through education –– two generations at a time.
Cincinnati Union Bethel and The Model Group will own the property as general partners, with The Model Group providing property management and Cincinnati Union Bethel managing the programming, including the early care and education center. The general partnership will provide substantial operating guarantees for the property and programming, and the cathedral will work with Cincinnati Union Bethel to raise supplemental funds for the operations. Additionally, the cathedral and Cincinnati Union Bethel will form an advisory board, Friends of Cincinnati Scholar House, to provide oversight of the programming side of CSH and will collaborate in developing a pool of volunteers, who will enhance the support activities.
UPDATE JULY, 2017: On our second try, Cincinnati Scholar House was awarded the Low Income Housing Tax Credit funding necessary to develop and build the 44-Family Cincinnati Scholar House in the 900 block of McMillan Avenue in Walnut Hills. The CSH is scheduled to open in the summer of 2019. The three partners have formed two working committees tasked with moving the project forward. The Development Committee is led by The Model Group and currently meets bi-weekly to review architectural designs, coordinate with community and city stakeholders and regulatory bodies, and review the physical plans for property development and construction. The Friends of Cincinnati Scholar House Committee is made up of representatives from Cincinnati Union Bethel and Christ Church Cathedral. It is charged with crafting the final agreement between the two organizations and to form the Friends of Cincinnati Scholar House Advisory Board that will raise supplemental operating funds and provide regularly scheduled review and guidance to the educational and community programs.
We will continue to keep our members and friends updated as we have more information to share.