Altria donates $3M to Better Housing Coalition
Richmond nonprofit to build affordable housing units
The Richmond-based nonprofit Better Housing Coalition (BHC) announced Monday it has received the largest corporate gift in its 33-year history — a $3 million gift from Henrico County-based Fortune 500 tobacco product manufacturer Altria Group Inc.
BHC plans to use the donation to develop more affordable housing in the greater Richmond region. It will also leverage the investment by raising a capital pool of at least $10 million to provide gap financing for affordable housing and to underwrite BHC support services and other organizational functions.
“Housing alone does not solve systemic racism, but it offers a foundation for families to experience security, stability and hope for a brighter future,” BHC President and CEO Greta J. Harris said in a statement. “This is a significant undertaking and we are most grateful for Altria’s investment in our work and commitment to transforming our region.”
Altria’s gift will support underwriting of the development and preservation of at least 1,000 affordable housing units, which BHC predicts will serve at least 2,000 low-to-moderate income residents.
“Safe, secure and affordable housing is foundational in creating a pathway to economic mobility for families in the Richmond region,” Jennifer Hunter, Altria senior vice president of corporate citizenship, said in a statement. “Investing in Better Housing Coalition and its community partners reflects Altria’s commitment to help address racial and economic inequities leading to a more inclusive and equitable community.”
Founded in 1988, BHC builds and manages affordable housing communities and provides other health, wellness and career development services. Its portfolio includes 17 multifamily rental complexes with 1,600 units under management and more than 200 single-family homes built and sold to first-time homeowners.