A way out of homelessness and poverty was the message today at the grand opening of the Dragonfly Village and Community Center, 10496 E. Tanque Verde Road in Tucson, east of Houghton Rd. Described as a “majestic setting, Dragonfly Village is 30 furnished rental apartments in its own gated communities, utilities are included with studio, 1, 3, and 4 bedrooms. Subsidies & housing vouchers are welcome.”
These 30 units are intended for homeless and low income individuals and families, with leases for transitional stays of 12 months, then 6 months, for no more than 24 months total.
The facility (still in construction) is located on 4.5 acres on the south side of Tanque Verde Road just east of the Agua Caliente Wash, in a lovely, spacious setting. The grand opening, attended by over 60 people was held today for board members, donors, community partners, neighbors, etc. with speakers emphasizing Amity Foundation’s commitment to helping people move from “hopelessness” to “hope” through programs such as these, with quality, affordable rental housing. Founder Naya Arbiter explained why the dragonfly was chosen for the logo because it is an ancient helpful creature, tied to the Spirit World of the Zuni Indians.
Rod Mullen, CEO of Amity Foundation spoke of how he lived for one year in Oakland, California observing poverty amongst the black community, which led him to today’s role at this project. Former Board member Prill Kuhn mentioned that funding for this complex came from the famous Deconcini family, the Udall family, and through donors from the East and West coasts as well as the Emerald Foundation, as also mentioned by board President Ray Clarke. Pima County Community Development and Housing also provided federal funds.
We took a tour of two units – a lovely large four bedroom/four bath house, and a smaller two bedroom/two bath home in circular designs around the large community room, which is intended to provide community resource assistance (i.e. with Tanque Verde Elementary School), case management and child care. The homes were immaculate and beautifully designed with tubs in each bathroom some skylights, quality furniture and accessories.
This is a beautiful alternative for low income and homeless people in Tucson. It is only a bit far out east, with the nearest bus stop about 2 miles to the west. Hopefully there will be convenient transportation to & from the bus stops, and or to other community resources (i.e shopping, agencies, schools).
Excellent article in today’s AZ Daily Star by columnist Tim Steller about this project and how it was built: http://tucson.com/news/local/column/steller-dragonfly-retreat-gives-homeless-roofs-services/article_e523200d-0f31-5850-8a5c-8289ee5b28f5.html
More info and how to apply for one of these units: www.dragonflyvillage.org. Dragonfly Village is a “sober, smoke free, drug free and crime free community in sustainable environment. Pets are not permitted. Residents safety and security are absolutely paramount”. (This is very important for families in domestic violence situations).
For Rental Information: Kim Fitch 520-382-0602, Sonia Valenzuela 520-398-5057
For Community Collaborations: Center Director Robert Cannon 520-628-3164