Everyone deserves to have a living space that they can call home. What is a decent living space for you? A house with individual rooms, a living room for everyone to share and enjoy at, and a dining area? It’s not the same for refugees since all they want is a decent home where all the family members can share and live without feeling unwelcomed. Even though it’s a simple need, finding such affordable housing options has become a challenge for Somali refugees in Ohio.
For millions of Somali refugees and immigrants, homeownership is one dream that they want to fulfill. If they get the opportunity to sleep with a roof over their heads, they feel blessed. They spend years living in refugee settlements and plastic tarps until they can afford to rent an apartment of their own. Why is this happening?
Somali refugees in Ohio are currently facing hundreds of challenges, but one challenge that triumphs over a new culture and language barrier is the housing crisis.
- The number of affordable housing units for low-income families is decreasing immensely. The number of refugees in need of homes is greater than the housing options available.
- If they do find a home, they have to spend more than half their monthly income on the rent and utilities of the house.
- Since they don’t have enough money left on their hands due to the expensive housing prices, they can’t pay for other essentials, such as food or medical care.
- As a reciprocal effect, an increasing number of families are at high risk of eviction and homelessness, which is devastating for families with children or older adults.
Is there a solution?
There’s a solution for every problem in the world, including this. There are three approaches to solve the affordable housing crisis for Somali refugees in Ohio:
1. Subsidized Rent for Refugees
It takes a few years for Somali refugee families to stabilize their expenses and start affording better things in life. To speed up this process, subsidizing the cost of rent for these Somali refugee families can help immensely.
By discounting the cost of an apartment for the initial few years, Somali refugee families can spend the money getting educated, affording medical assistance, and getting food for their families.
2. Community Connections
One of the best ways to help people in need is by creating and using your community connections. Property managers, realtors, landlords, and organizations can work together to help the Somali refugees in need. This will allow everyone as a society to help develop new and permanent housing options for Somali refugees in Ohio at an affordable price.
If you don’t have any connections, you can always contribute by donating to help us provide a better life for the Somali refugees in Ohio. At the Somali Community Link, we use every helping hand to provide for the Somalis in need. Your funds can help us provide better solutions to their housing needs, education funding, youth initiative programs, and much more.
Remember, no amount is too big or too small for us because every penny matters, even if it’s as low as $1. Visit our website to contribute.