Evictions in Asheville have returned to pre-pandemic levels, and many evictions begin when a tenant has raised concerns about housing conditions, says David Bartholomew, the nonprofit’s homelessness prevention services director.
Home-based child care may help with Buncombe needs
One potential way to close the child care gap, according to a recent report commissioned by the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation, would be to boost the number of home-based care providers. In Buncombe County, those facilities have decreased from 48 in 2006 to only 11 in 2022.
Green in brief: Duke Energy completes Hot Springs microgrid
The microgrid includes 2 megawatts of solar panel capacity and 4.4 MW of battery storage. Those resources are enough to power the entire town for an extended period if its connection to the main grid is disrupted.
From Asheville Watchdog: National consultant offers ‘road map’ to end homelessness in Asheville … again
Local advocates say they are skeptical that yet another study will make a difference.
WNC’s summer sports adapt in winter months
Tennis, soccer, baseball and softball players face different challenges in the colder parts of the year.
Just Economics plans ‘two-tiered’ living wage system
Under the new system, similar to that employed by the national Living Wage For Us campaign, businesses could remain in the Living Wage Program if they agreed to an $18 hourly minimum wage and “committed annual increases” toward a $20.10 wage rate.
Dr. William Hathaway marks one year at MAHEC
Hathaway spoke to Xpress about having an impact on the community’s health care, how the opioid epidemic affected him as a cardiologist and his excitement over becoming a grandparent.
Family shelter lands at church instead of vacant school
Although Asheville has numerous shelters for the homeless population, its organizers say this particular shelter fills gaps in the city’s current system. “The focus is on intact families,” explains shelter worker Gene Ettison.
Green in brief: Conserving Carolina to expand Bracken Mountain Preserve
On Dec. 30, the nonprofit completed the purchase of 34 acres in Brevard to expand the preserve. The new land will bolster the existing 395-acre park, owned by the city of Brevard, which connects to the Pisgah National Forest.
From CPP: The uncertain future of old-growth forests in North Carolina, part four
In part four, the last in the series, CPP reports on the objections and responses to the recent decision to harvest 26 acres that encompass an old growth patch of forest on a 3,500-foot mountaintop — the Southside Project.
City school board OKs Asheville Primary shelter plan
The Winter Safe Shelter program at Asheville Primary School, as explained by Counterflow Asheville, will prioritize families, LGBTQ people and residents who are Black, Indigenous or people of color. The shelter plans to operate nightly through the end of March, housing up to 10 people per night with space for another 10 support staff on site.
Green in brief: Asheville protects land at Mills River water plant
Backed by a $400,000 grant from the N.C. Land and Water Fund, the nonprofit Mills River Partnership is restoring roughly 14 acres of riverside near the plant. Maria Wise, the nonprofit’s executive director, says her organization will stabilize the riverbanks and replace invasive plants with native varieties.
G5 Trail Collective opens first phase of planned network
The first part of the Old Fort Trails Project, aptly named the Old Fort Gateway Trails, features six miles of accessible trails off of Curtis Creek Road in the McDowell County town. Another 36 miles of hiking, biking and horse paths are planned for construction through 2027.
Community groups discuss city advocacy
Asheville on Bikes has recently drawn attention for its successful advocacy at City Hall, but it’s just one of many community organizations that seek to pull the levers of political power in Asheville. Xpress spoke to several of these groups to learn more about how they pursue their agendas.
From Asheville Watchdog: Trustee who criticized director is ousted from art museum board
Michelle Weitzman, the only trustee to speak publicly about employee complaints of mistreatment at the Asheville Art Museum, was removed from the museum’s board Nov. 15.
Local companies prioritize hands-on giving
Local nonprofit leaders say they’re seeing more companies prioritize volunteering and service projects rather than just giving money. They’re also seeking long-term relationships with specific organizations rather than just one-off collaborations.
Whatever it takes: Staying true to the vision
In 2020, the Organic Growers School transitioned to a lateral executive team. The move, says Cameron Farlow, the nonprofit’s executive director, has led to a more dynamic approach to leadership.
Whatever it takes: Moving out of survival mode
The nationwide shortage of direct support professionals has created many challenges for Open Hears Art Center, says Debbie Harris, the organization’s co-executive.
The rise of Indigenous land acknowledgments
Indigenous activists offer their thoughts on a trend that’s recently gathered local momentum.
Q&A: Future hopes and plans for Esther Neonatal Kitten Rescue
Xpress speaks with Andee Bingham, executive director of Esther Neonatal Kitten Rescue, about her organization’s future goals, advice she’d offer those launching a nonprofit and her favorite kitten story.
Whatever it takes: Making it work despite costs and delays
Rising costs and red tape led to many delays for Asheville Music School this year. But its executive director, Ryan Reardon, says there’s plenty to remain hopeful for come 2023.