Panel discussions dealing with topics ranging from advocacy for housing in the Delta Region to models and practices for housing developments will be the order of the day as part of a special forum to be held in Helena Monday, June 24.
Panel discussions dealing with topics ranging from advocacy for housing in the Delta Region to models and practices for housing developments will be the order of the day as part of a special forum to be held in Helena Monday, June 24. Phillips County Community College will be the site for “Arkansas Delta Housing Community Forum: Visions of Adequate and Affordable Housing for the 21st Century.” Sponsored by the Delta Citizens Alliance, the forum will get underway at 9 a.m. and will continue until around 3 p.m. Registration will begin at 8 a.m. DCA's objective is to connect Delta residents, leaders and organizations with each other, the country and the world to promote healthy, energetic, affluent and sustainable communities in the Mid-south Delta Region. The DCA encompasses the tri-state area of Arkansas, Mississippi and Louisiana. Bruce Lockett, of Marvell's Boys, Girls and Adults Community Center, serves as chairman of the DCA board. Other organizations involved in the forum include: Local Initiatives Support Corporation (L.I.S.C.), Arkansas Coalition of Housing and Neighborhood Growth for Employment (ACHANGE), Delta Community Development and Law Center, Arkansas Public Policy Panel and University of Arkansas/Partners for Inclusive Communities. Larry Williams of DCA will offer introductions and the welcome address as well serve as the moderator of the first panel discussion centered on advocacy for housing in the Delta Region. Besides Williams, the panelists will include Debra Banks of ACHANGE, Michael Jackson of Delta Community Development and Law Center and Bill Kopsky, Arkansas Public Policy Panel. A discussion involving housing models and best practices will consist of Andy Saavedra of LISC as moderator; Beatrice Shelby of BGACDC; Sam Scruggs of Mississippi County Arkansas, Economic Opportunity Center; Andre Stephens, of St. Francis Community Development Corp.; and Michael Jackson, of the Delta Community Development and Law Center. Saavedra will be the keynote speaker during the lunch hour from noon to 1:20 p.m. A free lunch will be provided. The final panel discussion will center on the topic Arkansas Housing Trust Fund. Banks will serve as moderation and will feature remarks by David Deere, of the U of A's Partners for inclusive Communities.