Christian Church Homes

Looking To Progress in the New Year

Don Stump, President/CEO of Christian Church Homes

Don Stump, President/CEO of Christian Church HomesDear Friends,

As we move forward in the new year, there is much for which to be grateful. COVID-19 cases are dropping and the economy continues to improve following the rough and tumble years brought about by the pandemic. Yet many challenges continue to confront our residents. Rental rates in California continue to spiral with many assistance program being slashed, eliminated or cut back.

Studies have shown older renters are more likely to be behind in their rental payments and those who are current are often struggling to make ends meet for the next month’s rent. They must often juggle rent payments with other needed necessities such as food and medical supplies. Many rental assistance programs implemented during the pandemic have expired, leaving some renters scrambling for other means of assistance. Lower-income renters often are more anxious about having the money needed to make monthly payments for necessities such as food and shelter. This is especially true for older adults on a fixed income. Have you priced a dozen eggs or a gallon of gas lately? This can be a lot to balance.

On the good news front, California leads the nation in providing services necessary to help older residents meet their daily care needs. There also were some key legislative wins in 2022 which should help clear the way to make more housing available and affordable. Six substantial bills were signed into law in 2022 which can help in escalating new housing developments. There are other bills on the docket which we must continue to watch and advocate for their passage in helping those with limited incomes have more available housing options. Read more in this issue and consider how you might join with CCH to lend your voice of support.

All the best,


Don Stump

CCH Interim President/CEO

California Rents Continue to Spiral

In California, the Fair Market Rent for a two-bedroom apartment is $2,028. To afford this level of rent and associated utilities, your household would need to bring in $6,761 per month or $81,133 annually to avoid paying more than 30 percent of your income to rent. If you are making minimum wage of $15 per hour, you’d need to work 104 hours per week or the equivalent of 2.6 full-time jobs to afford this level of rent and utilities for a modest two-bedroom apartment. For a one-bedroom apartment, you would have to work 83 hours or the equivalent of 2.1 full-time jobs to afford a one-bedroom apartment.

As this trend spirals, many renters are being priced out of the market as rents continue to rise across the state. In the space of ten years, a two-bedroom apartment rose 18 percent between 2002 and 2022. For low-income tenants, these increases can mean having to cut back on basic necessities, such as food, medical supplies or transportation, or be at risk for eviction or homelessness. This is a constant fear among many elderly renters.

This is a crisis that continues to grow. CCH is working on solutions to find more available and affordable housing to meet the income gap. There are more than five million renters across the state, of which 45 percent of the population are renters. More common-sense legislation is needed to invest in finding affordable rental housing solutions for our communities.

Join with CCH and other leaders in the affordable housing field to push for more affordable quality housing in meeting this crisis head on. To learn more, click here to view the National Low Income Housing Coalition’s Out-of-Reach report.

California Leads Nation in Meeting Elder Care Needs

While California has some of the highest rents in the nation, there is some good news for older state residents. According to a report from the MedicareGuide analysis, California residents are better poised for long-term care in their golden years than folks in other parts of the country.

MedicareGuide, which is part of the consumer health information website, ranked states across 27 relevant measures including cost, access and quality to assess which states and regions provided the best long-term care.

According to previous research, the federal government is projecting there will be 95 million people aged 65 or older by 2065, with 15 percent of that group expected to have at least two disabilities. As a result, the number of Americans using long-term care services is expected to double from 7 million to more than 14 million by 2065. The research showed some states are doing better than others in prepping for the coming “silver wave.”

California tops the MedicareGuide list for its low monthly community and assisted living costs, followed closely behind by Minnesota and Washington. The states of South Dakota, Montana and Wyoming are at the bottom of the list.

Since its early beginning, CCH has instituted social service programs designed to provide resources to help residents age in place with dignity and grace. CCH was one of the first affordable housing organizations to establish on-site Social Service Coordinators who work directly with residents in linking them with appropriate community resources and programs. Over the years, this personal touch has significantly added to the quality of residents’ lives, helping them to live more independently and to reap the benefits of a rich home life.

Legislative Progress in 2021-22

As the New Year gets underway, a look back at 2022 reveals several legislative wins on the affordable housing front. Even with battling priorities slowing legislative movement as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, six bills heavily endorsed by many in the affordable housing field were signed into law – AB 2244, AB 252, AB 1837, AB 2094, AB 2011, and SB 948. Here’s a look at what passed and what you might expect in the coming year provided by the East Bay Housing Organization:


AB 2244 (Wicks) – Faith Parking Spaces & Affordable Housing
Allows a developer of a new place of worship, when also constructing housing, to reduce by 50% the number of religious use parking spaces required.

AB 252 (Bonta)- Rent & Vacancy Control for Floating Homes
Extends rent and vacancy control protections for floating homes in Alameda, Contra Costa, and Marin counties.

AB 1837 (Bonta) – Improvements to Residential Foreclosure Law
Strengthens provisions in SB 1079 (Skinner), which provides tenants and nonprofits an opportunity to match investor bids at a foreclosure auction.

AB 2094 (Rivas) – Adding Extremely Low-Income to APRs
Requires local jurisdictions to report their progress towards ELI units to HCD as part of their annual Housing Element progress reports.

AB 2011 (Wicks) – Affordable Housing & High Road Jobs Act
Establishes by-right zoning to permit affordable housing on land zoned for commercial uses and mixed-income housing along commercial corridors.

SB 948 (Becker) – Creation of Statewide Project Reserves Pool
Replaces individual project transition reserves for the development of affordable housing to a pooled reserve model, operated by HCD.


SCA-2 (Allen) – Statewide Repeal of Article 34


AB 1685 (Bryan) – Parking Ticket Relief for People Experiencing Homelessness 

AB 1288 (Quirk-Silva) – Low-Income Housing Tax Credits

AB 2817 (Reyes) – House California Challenge Program

AB 1487 (Gabriel) – Statewide Eviction Defense Program 


AB 1816 (Bryan) – Reentry Housing Program 

AB 1961 (Gabriel) – Statewide Affordable Housing Database

AB 2050 (Lee) – Ellis Act Reform 

AB 2357 (Ting) – Surplus Land Act Amendments 

AB 2710 (Kalra) – Tenant & Community Opportunity to Purchase Act (TOPA/COPA) 

AB 2713 (Wicks) – Improvements to AB 1482, Just Cause Eviction Protections 

SB 490 (Caballero) – TA for Acquisition/Rehab (bill was gut & amended)


ACA-14 (Wicks) – Housing Opportunities for Everyone Act

AB 1911 (Gabriel) – Affordable Housing Tax Credit

AB 1961 (Gabriel) – Statewide Affordable Housing Database

SB 917 (Becker) – Regional Seamless Transit Act 


AB 2053 (Lee) – Social Housing Act — Senate Governance & Finance

AB 1850 (Ward) – Min. Standards for JPAs — Senate Gov. & Finance

SB 1336 (Wiener) – Faith Institutions to Build AH — Assembly Natural Resources

SB 1176 (Limon) – California Community Reinvestment Act — Assembly Banking & Finance


For a ready guide, you can click here to download and print this EBHO recap in a convenient PDF format.

Thanks for Your Ongoing Support

Don Stump, President/CEO of Christian Church Homes

Don Stump, President/CEO of Christian Church HomesDear Friends,

Another year is rapidly drawing to a close. It’s hard to believe I’ve been back at the helm of CCH as Interim President/CEO for nearly three months while our CCH Board diligently searches for a new CEO. I am encouraged by the recruitment process and have every confidence we will secure an outstanding candidate who will lead our organization forward. We will keep you updated as the process unfolds. I am extremely thankful for the ongoing support of our friends, beneficiaries, partners and most especially our staff for keeping this ship upright and steady as we continue the important work of serving our valued seniors after more than 60 years in the affordable housing field.

We live in a culture that often does not value the contributions of the elderly who may find themselves ignored, denigrated or disregarded simply because they are older. The elderly homeless population are disproportionally at risk for death and women often bear the burden of housing inequities. Organizations such as CCH help reverse this trend and offer seniors the services and respect that they so deeply deserve. We pride ourselves on the care given to elderly residents day after day—every day! Your ongoing efforts on behalf of affordable housing enables CCH to provide more than 5,000 residents each year with a warm place to call home.

As the year comes to a close, so does the window for year-end giving. The past two years have been particularly hard for many seniors who struggle with rising costs and economic uncertainties. If you have been thinking about an end-of-the-year tax write-off, we humbly ask you to consider giving to CCH’s Resident Care Fund (RCF).  The RCF is used exclusively for helping residents to bridge a one-time, unexpected financial gap. Generous donations, such as yours, can provide transportation for seniors to an urgent medical appointment, or the purchase of costly prescriptions, medical equipment or supplies to improve the quality of life. Your gift, no matter how large or small, can truly can make a difference and bring peace of mind to seniors struggling to make ends meet. Click here to learn more about the RCF. Give from the heart and show you care about the welfare of others who have come on difficult times.

Thank you in advance for your consideration. We hope you will join us with us in our mission of providing affordable quality housing in a caring community for seniors. On behalf of myself, the CCH Board, executive management and our more than 250 cherished employees, we wish you and your loved ones a most joyous holiday season and a prosperous new year.

All the best,


Don Stump

CCH Interim President/CEO

Study Shows Poorer Health Outcomes for Homeless Older Adults

How bad for health is homelessness on older adults? According to a recent article published in The San Francisco Chronicle, a UCSF study found becoming homeless after the age of 50 increases the likelihood of dying early by 60 percent. The study underscores the unmistakable and life-altering role of housing to extend life.

“There is no medicine as powerful as housing,” says Dr. Margot Kushel, director of UCSF’s Benioff Housing and Homelessness Initiative and senior author of the study.

The study which followed 450 older homeless adults at various stages in Oakland for nearly a decade found that people who remained unhoused—compared with those who regained their housing—were 80% more likely to die during the study’s period from mid-2013 to the end of 2021.

Those who entered homelessness after age 50 also were 60% more likely to die over the eight-year period of the study than those who first experienced homelessness at a younger age. The study concluded that homeless people over 50 were 3.5 times more likely to die than similarly aged people in Oakland’s general population.

The most common causes of death among the homeless were heart disease, cancer and drug overdose, 14.5%, 14.5% and 12% respectively. If the study participants had been housed, those conditions likely would been more successfully addressed, according to the study, published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine.

Among the significant factors outlined by researchers were:

  • Losing housing after decades of stability is so disruptive that a person is more susceptible to become sickand to suffer health conditions that go untreated;
  • The potential violence and physical wear of living outside can be a contributing factor to poor health; and
  • The stress of struggling to meet daily needs like food, restroom use and managing unknowns in the future causes anxiety and adds to poorer health outcomes.

Of the homeless population in America, researchers estimate between one third and one half are older than 50. Pointing to an increasingly tattered senior safety net and the shrinking ability for people to adequately save money and make other arrangements for retirement, that same estimate was about 11% in 1990. The study’s authors believe their findings are likely indicative of homeless people over 50 throughout the nation.

“Becoming homeless after 50 brings with it an incredibly high risk of death — it’s a major shock to the system to have a sudden change rather than a gradual one,” according to the lead author.  “These untimely deaths show that there is a critical need to prevent older adults from becoming homeless in the first place, and quickly rehousing them if they do lose their homes is crucial.”


A Case for Helping the Homeless

Johná Wilcoxen, 72, a participant since the UCSF HOPE-HOME study began in 2013, was recently featured in a San Francisco Chronical article. Partially disabled since 1998, he lost his government-subsidized housing in Berkeley at age 54 when his children grew up and moved away, changing the conditions for the subsidy.

Though he had knee trouble, he was still able to do some work as a plumber — but only enough “to pay for food, transportation, and every now and then a motel room,” he said. He lived on the streets, on friends’ couches and in a car until he finally got another government housing voucher and moved into a small house in East Oakland in March.

“Being on the streets day after day after day — it’s just no way to live, and it’s much harder when you’re over 50,” Johná shares. He is now a community adviser for the HOPE-HOME study.

“After 50, my income was lower than when I was younger, I didn’t get constant jobs. The Section 8 (housing voucher) list is so long you wait four or five years,” he explains. He counts himself “blessed” that, with high blood pressure and constant stress from roof-less vulnerability, he’s lasted long enough to get housing.

“Jesus was looking out for me,” he says. “And it can’t be just for me. We need to get as many people as we can off the street so more people can stay alive.”

Women Face Greater Housing Inequities

Women are less likely to own their own homes and are more likely to shoulder unaffordable housing costs—especially Black, Latina, Native American women, single mothers and the elderly, according to a recently published report by the Gender Equity Policy Institute. The greater difficulty women face is intertwined with systemic gender inequality in the broader society, the report cites.

About 10.3 million Californian adults live in housing considered unaffordable by standard measures. To rent a one-bedroom apartment at the fair market rate in California requires an income of nearly $58,000—or a wage of $28 per hour for a full-time worker. The median price of a single-family home in California, as of April 2022, was $884,890.

The Gender Equity Policy Institute, at the request of the California State Assembly Committee on Housing and Community Development, analyzed extensive data on Californians’ housing experience to examine the impact of the housing crisis on women.

In California, more than half (52%) of renters spend more than 30% of their income on housing and are considered “rent burdened.” More than a quarter (26%) spend over 50% of their income on housing and are considered “severely rent burdened.”

Women are more likely than men to be rent burdened and severely rent burdened. They are less likely to own their own homes. When they do, they are more likely to be shouldering unaffordable housing costs and are more likely than men to have extremely low income.

Key findings of the report noted:

  • 49% of women are rent burdened, compared to 43% of men
  • 25% of women are severely rent burdened, compared to 20% of men
  • 59% of Black women are rent burdened and 33% are severely rent burdened
  • 66% of women who live alone are rent burdened
  • Women-headed households are five times as likely as households headed by a married couple to be extremely low-income
  • 73% of single mothers are rent burdened, compared to just 56% of single fathers
  • One third of elderly Black and Latina women living alone have income below the federal poverty line
  • 4 in 10 of the 232,000 unhoused individuals in California are women

The reported concluded that the soaring cost of housing weakens California’s economy and harms most of the state’s communities. As the state’s political and business leadership commit to finding equitable solutions to our housing crisis, the moment is ripe for adopting a gender responsive approach to housing policymaking and using available resources to put the state on a more sustainable course for housing equity.

CCH – The Mission Rolls On 

Don Stump, President/CEO of Christian Church Homes

Don Stump, President/CEO of Christian Church Homes

Dear Friends:

CCH currently employs a few hundred people and provides safe and affordable housing, along with an array of supportive services, to thousands of seniors. We are now housed in Walnut Creek, Ca where the population is 69,500. In our 61 year history, we have provided safe and beautiful homes to more seniors than make up this entire city – something worthy of accolades.

As the baby boomer population continues to age, our country is now seeing more than a fifth of its population ranging in age from 65 to 100. These hearty souls need a complexity of services; transportation, medical support, financial advice and, like myself, hearing aids. Substantial research indicates the number one thing to improve quality of life for seniors is a safe and affordable place to call home – and that is our mission!

CCH has very definite and clear plans to help meet this ever growing and complex challenge of an aging America. Plans are on the drawing board for many new facilities in multiple cities and to continue the sound maintenance and operation of our properties, including our first community in Santa Cruz which has been in operation for 60 years.

Besides our highly-trained staff, CCH has a committed board of directors. The board recently announced a search for a new President/CEO to head our corporate team. In our first 60 years, we have had six CEO’s, and the search is on for our next great leader. When that search is completed, we will share the name of the next good soul who will lead us forward. We stand ready with a dedicated and capable team to ensure a smooth transition in meeting the complex challenges ahead for our aging senior adult population.

Best Wishes,


Don Stump

Acting President/CEO

How Livable is Your Community?

The AARP Livability Index: Great Neighborhoods for All Ages scores every neighborhood and community in the United States for services and amenities that affect people’s lives. Measures taken into account include housing, transportation, opportunities for social engagement and more – all of which are designed to support residents as they age.

Developed in 2015 by the AARP Public Policy Institute, the tool is able “to help evaluate community policies, compare communities and measure livability.” It also can be used to help identify gaps between what communities have and what residents need to thrive. In June 2018, the index was relaunched with updated data and site features.

Click here to access the tool and to learn more about the livability of your community.