New Story supporters,
The start of 2023 kicked off what I’m calling Act 2 of New Story.
Act 1 was our first eight years – a time when we relied primarily on charity and subsidies to fund homes for families in need. Thanks to your generosity, we brought life-changing housing to nearly 15,000 people and built the foundation for our long-term vision in Act 1. While we’re proud of the impact, we’re not settling. We’re scaling.
Act 2 of New Story is the next eight years — our journey through 2030. It’s when we take our learnings to practice a more sustainable, innovative approach to ending global homelessness.
Rather than only relying on charity to give homes to families, we’re working with the market to create affordable and accessible housing solutions for low-income families. Rather than addressing the symptoms of homelessness, we’re tackling the barriers and causes.
We believe families deserve more than charity. They deserve the opportunity to participate in a market.
I’ve never been more confident in our strategy at New Story. And I am ecstatic about the talent we’re attracting for Act 2. Creating a more inclusive housing market will exponentially scale the impact you make possible.
I’m grateful for your support in this season. There’s plenty to celebrate from the past eight years. And thanks to you, there’s more to be hopeful for in the next eight.
Watch the video below to learn more about our evolved impact strategy.
Simple joys of home
We recently visited the community of El Espino, El Salvador. This community is home to 64 families who were previously kicked off their property and lived on the streets for 12 years.
Your generosity helped us build homes for every family in 2021. Two years later, the community is thriving.
María invited us into her home in El Espino. She lives there with her daughter and two grandsons. While one grandson, Ever, was playing in his Spider-Man costume, María proudly showed us her lush garden that covers her patio and overflows to her front door. Her dream is to grow a flower in every color.
From gardens to superheroes, simple joys are signs that El Espino is flourishing.
Meet Enrique Mezo
Impact Investment Director
Enrique Mezo recently joined the New Story team as our first impact investment director. His multidisciplinary background in finance, government, and private capital will help us scale our impact across Latin America. Mezo will develop market-driven affordable housing investments by collaborating with investors and partners to identify social and financial outcomes, develop investment structures, and negotiate and execute transactions.
“I want to contribute with the trailblazer team who has not only identified a pressing social challenge but has worked thoroughly to solve it. Regarding social development and social mobility, many issues must be addressed in LATAM. Unfortunately, housing has been overlooked by key stakeholders. My new role gives me the opportunity to contribute with the team in designing and executing the investment strategies that will not only create value for investors but empower families through home ownership.”
Fintech for good
We’re collaborating with El Salvador’s Ministry of Housing, Bitcoin Beach, Coinbase, and others to build the world’s first community featuring blockchain-based mortgages. The 122-home community in Bitcoin Beach is supporting low-income families who are unbanked and have no financing opportunities for adequate housing — until now.
Thanks to the innovation of our partner, Bitrefill, Bitcoin Beach now features the world’s first Bitcoin ATMs that accept not only bills but coins as well. Running on the Lightning Network, these Bitcoin ATMs further bring digital transformation to people previously underserved. Families used to spend hours of their weeks traveling to make cash payments in person. Now, they can walk out of their homes and exchange their hard-earned cash and coins for bitcoin and make a mortgage payment in seconds.
Innovation is unlocking the financial inclusion necessary for vulnerable families to access safe housing.
Learn more about Bitcoin Beach here.
Director of People & Culture
At New Story, we pride ourselves on being different than traditional nonprofits. This is most seen in our innovations. But what are a few examples of us operating differently as a culture?
Just this week, a team member shared the following with me: “I have never once questioned whether my manager cares about me as a person.” Y’all, my heart did a happy dance! 💃🏽
Every week, managers check in with their direct reports, team members check in on one another (we call them Hang10s), and the People & Culture Team checks in with a handful of random team members 1:1. Not just professionally, but personally. We dedicate this time to learning more about each other, building connections, and identifying ways we can support and uplift one another.
Caring for others is not revolutionary, but the impact (the increase in trust, loyalty, motivation, excellence, etc.) certainly can be.
You see A LOT of applications for our roles at New Story. What sets top candidates apart from others?
My technical answer is format and content of the resume. Most candidates list job responsibilities at each job. Top candidates highlight their impact at each job.
My creative answer is personality and connection to the mission.
One of my favorite ways personality manifests is when a candidate creatively leverages the application format to showcase their strengths. It’s unexpected and above-and-beyond. Example: a copywriter candidate submits a quippy, tailored cover letter.
I also enjoy when candidates share personal stories regarding why they want to work at New Story. You likely won’t remember the job responsibilities listed in the resume, but you’ll remember the personal stories.
Read the entire interview with Sophia here. She shares how to overcome managers’ biggest obstacles and her favorite resources for improving team culture.
Ways to get involved
Help us grow our board of directors 🔎
We’re expanding our board by adding a new member this year.
Board members bring expertise, funding, and their network to our mission of ending global homelessness. The ideal candidate will have a Latin American background in real estate development or construction, international impact, financing, and company building. You can refer someone to join our board by emailing email@example.com.
Fund a sustainable home for a family without one ♻️
You can bring safe housing to a vulnerable family forever with a $10,000 donation. Every dollar goes directly to building a sustainable home for a family in San Vicente, El Salvador. Learn more about the climate-conscious community of San Vicente here.
If you’d like to learn more about your giving opportunities, reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Host a vision night in your city 🌃
New Story Vision Nights give you an opportunity to gather your community, share your passion for ending global homelessness, and make a difference together.
Generous supporters are hosting Vision Nights in Atlanta and Indianapolis this quarter. They’re providing an event space and inviting their network to learn more about how we’re addressing the housing crisis. Our team partners with you throughout the entire process to make it as simple and impactful as possible.
If you’d like to learn more about hosting a Vision Night, please contact email@example.com.