February 23, 2015 — CHR (Community Housing and Resources) has recently partnered with Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU) to conduct a needs assessment that will help CHR to plan strategically as Sanibel’s affordable housing needs continue to evolve. Through a series of questionnaires, surveys, focus groups, and personal interviews, the FGCU team has been crisscrossing Sanibel and Captiva and reaching into neighborhoods just off-island to obtain data.
According to Dr. Margaret Banyan, FGCU associate professor and MPA graduate program coordinator, who is heading up the team from FGCU along with Thomas Felke, assistant professor and BSW coordinator in FGCU’s Department of Social Work, “FGCU is happy to partner with CHR on this needs assessment. Participation by island residents and business owners has been excellent and already we are seeing trends that relate to affordable housing needs and the role that CHR plays here.”
CHR’s executive director Kelly Collini agrees. “We’re already off to a great start with the assessment,” she said. “What we want people to know right now is that we really need their help in this. If a member of the team contacts you to participate in a focus group or survey for CHR, please help because your input is extremely valuable to us.”
Collini ex, pects the results of the assessment to provide CHR with data that will help to drive its strategic planning. “CHR’s board recognized that in order for us to be even more effective in providing affordable housing on Sanibel we would have to get a better look at current and future housing needs—the needs of potential residents, the needs of our local businesses, and the needs of our community in general.”
CHR’s needs assessment is expected to wrap up this spring. If you are contacted by a member of FGCU’s survey team, your participation is voluntary, but you are encouraged to provide your thoughts and input.