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Institute for Urban Research and Development (IURD)

The Institute for Urban Research and Development (IURD) is a nonprofit community-based research and social service agency that promotes community development by facilitating the self-empowerment of people and communities. We advance social, cultural, and economic solutions through community-based research, public policy advocacy, nonprofit program development and direct community services.

IURD has conducted numerous community planning studies, needs assessments, and issue-based surveys on a range of issues such as demographic trends, homelessness, economic development, community development, fair housing and affordable housing that have resulted in the development of new public policy and program implementation models throughout Southern California. The cornerstone of our work is our commitment to helping local governments and community coalitions utilize community-based research as a vital tool to developing effective local strategies to address complex social issues.

IURD and our principal staff leadership have over 10 years of experience in implementing homeless census counts, conducting one-on-one questionnaires/surveys, and compiling related reports in cooperation with municipal governments, community-based agencies, and individuals designed to capture the information necessary to identify needs and develop comprehensive continuum of care strategies. Under the leadership of Dr. Joseph Colletti, Executive Director of IURD, the following studies, surveys, and related reports have been developed:

  • "City of Pasadena Homeless Count September 23, 1992: Preliminary Report" (November, 1992);
  • "City of Pasadena 1992 Homeless Count: Final Report" (April, 1993);
  • "City of Glendale 1995-1996 Winter Shelter: Final Report" (September, 1996);
  • "Homelessness in East San Gabriel Valley" (February, 1997)
  • "A Continuum of Care Inventory of Homeless Services in The Arroyo-Verdugo Sub-Region (Burbank, Glendale, La Canada Flintridge, Pasadena, and South Pasadena)" (May 1997);
  • "A Continuum of Care of Homeless Services in East San Gabriel Valley: Planning for Action", (December, 1997)
  • "Homelessness in the City of Pasadena: Issues and Data" (May, 1998)
  • "Homelessness in the City of Glendale: Issues and Data" (January, 1999);
  • "Homelessness in San Gabriel Valley: Selected Cities" (March, 2000);
  • "The City of Pasadena Homeless Count 2000: Final Report (May, 2000);
  • "City of Riverside: Homeless Task Force Report" (February, 2001)
  • "Glendale Homeless Survey for 2001": Preliminary Report (April 2001);
  • "Women Living on the Streets of Pasadena" (September, 2001).
  • “Homelessness in the City of Pasadena: 2001” (April, 2002)
  • “Homelessness in the City of Santa Clarita: 2002” (April, 2002)
  • “City of Glendale Homeless Count: 2002” (May, 2002)

Over the years, IURD has worked with coalitions of public officials and community service providers to develop continuum of care strategies and facilitate the creation of locally coordinated homeless services. These efforts have resulted in the development of a variety of continuum of care service strategies including the creation of one-stop homeless access centers in the cities of Pasadena, Glendale, Pomona, El Monte, West Covina, Whittier and Riverside. In addition, our work with local and regional coalitions has resulted in millions of dollars awarded by the Department of Housing and Urban Development in the following communities:

$8,350,000 awarded to City of Pasadena between 1995 and 2001
$7,500,000 awarded to City of Glendale between 1995 and 2001
$3,450,000 awarded in the City of El Monte in 1997 and 1998
$900,000 awarded in the City of West Covina in 1997 and 2001
$750,000 awarded in the City of Pomona in 1998

In addition to our homeless research, IURD has prepared HUD Five Year Consolidated Plans for the cities of Pasadena and Glendora and have served as principal consultants in preparing Analysis of Impediments to Fair Housing Choice Studies for the cities of Glendale, Pasadena, El Monte, West Covina, Pico Rivera, Paramount, Huntington Park and Inglewood. In the Fall of 2001, we completed an Analysis of Impediments to Fair Housing Choice Study for the City of Long Beach.

In addition to the work described above, since 1996 IURD has developed and implemented a wide range of programs designed to fulfill community-based strategies to address the needs of disenfranchised populations in the areas of homelessness, community development, economic revitalization, housing, cultural affairs and youth development. Since our inception, IURD has worked in collaboration with a broad base of community-based organizations and individuals to develop programs in the following areas:

Homeless Programs: IURD works with local governments and community-based organizations to help “break the cycle of homelessness -- one person, one family at a time” in communities throughout Southern California. Our Project ACHIEVE programs in Glendale, El Monte and Riverside serve as one-stop multidisciplinary service centers providing a broad range of specialized case management and residential shelter services to address the needs of homeless individuals and families and help them to achieve self-sufficiency.

Economic Development Programs: IURD has developed a model for facilitating neighborhood-based reinvestment in economically depressed neighborhoods called V.E.N.D. (Vital Economic Neighborhood Development). V.E.N.D. is designed to promote neighborhood economic revitalization through an integrated community reinvestment strategy that empowers local residents and area merchants to turn their visions into reality. Our V.E.N.D. at MacArthur Park program includes the only official sidewalk vending district operating in the City of Los Angeles and an apprentice-operated business and job training restaurant, Mama’s Hot Tamales Café.

Community Development Services: IURD provides assistance to local governments, community-based organizations and faith-based institutions to identify needs and establish strategies, tools and resources for developing solutions to meet social, economic and cultural needs. Through our CommunityWorks services, we conduct community-based research, public policy analysis, and capacity-building assistance to help set priorities, develop public policies and design program models to fulfill local strategies to address critical community needs and concerns. Our work includes assisting communities in developing consolidated plans, analysis of impediments to fair housing and comprehensive homeless studies.

Cultural Enrichment Programs: “Las Danzas del Peru” supports Peru's rich traditions of folkloric dance through performances and educational activities. Its mission is to celebrate and preserve the culture, dance, and music of Peru and to foster cross culture education and appreciation. “The Latino Cultural Academy” organizes and presents a variety of cultural education activities and events involving music, dance, art and folklore, to promote cross cultural awareness, understanding and appreciation.

Youth Programs: Our La Gente Crew program provides training in high tech communications and computer applications combined with outdoors-environmental learning experiences to at-risk youths. La Gente Crew is dedicated to redirecting at-risk youth away from the influence of gangs, drugs and violence by engaging them in challenging activities designed to introduce them to the wide range of options and opportunities available to them in the world.

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