Housing Futures Month Syllabus

What is Housing Futures Month?

Housing as a foundation for building health, where families and communities thrive, where our experiences are liberatory–those are the housing futures we are working to realize. Bright and bold housing futures for our communities mean new models and approaches that are unapologetically inclusive of all, imagined and made possible by the brilliance, insights, and guidance from the communities most impacted by housing inequities. Today, under constant threat of displacement from their homes, and often occupied with planning how to survive the next day, week, or month, Black, Brown, and Indigenous people and communities are left with little space and time to dream about and plan for their futures. Housing Futures Month calls on each of us to consider how we each can contribute to designing and implementing housing models that allow everyone the stability and ability to dream about and pursue bold futures. 

Housing Futures Month Syllabus

During the month of April, we’ll be sharing a variety of materials as part of our Housing Futures Month and want you to have the opportunity to engage deeper in the many facets of housing futures, so we’ve developed a syllabus with a collection of materials and activities. You can choose your own adventure — working solo, with your family, in your community, in any order you want — this is meant to be adapted and remixed in whatever ways support your exploration. 

Online Tools and Resources

  • Rise Home Stories
    • Rise-Home Stories is a groundbreaking collaboration between multimedia storytellers and social justice advocates seeking to change our relationship to land, home, and race, by transforming the stories we tell about them.
    • DOT'S HOME is a single player game about DOROTHEA (DOT) HAWKINS, a young Black woman in her late 20’s living with her grandmother MAVIS HAWKINS in Detroit, Michigan. Following a cryptic conversation with her grandmother, Dot receives a MYSTERIOUS KEY. This key allows Dot to open a door within her house and travel to another space in time within her own family history.

  • The Roots of Structural Racism Project - Othering and Belonging Institute
    • The Roots of Structural Racism Project investigates the persistence of racial residential segregation across the United States. Among the many components included in this project are the national segregation report which contains startling findings about the intensification of racial residential segregation in recent decades; and an interactive mapping tool that illustrates the level of segregation in every city, region, and neighborhood in the country.
  • The Texas Freedom Colonies Project by Dr. Andrea Roberts  
    • The Texas Freedom Colonies Project is an educational and social justice initiative dedicated to supporting the preservation of Black settlement landscapes, heritage, and grassroots preservation practices through research
  • Reconstructions: Architecture and Blackness in America 
    • How does race structure America’s cities? MoMA’s first exhibition and online learning platform to explore the relationship between architecture and the spaces of African American and African diaspora communities, Reconstructions: Architecture and Blackness in America presents 11 newly commissioned works by architects, designers, and artists that explore ways in which histories can be made visible and equity can be built. 
  • Community Futures Lab
    • The purpose of FUTURESLAB.COMMUNITY is to document shared memories, histories, and futures of communities in Brewerytown-Sharswood and the larger North Philly community.
  • Dark Matter University
    • Collective liberation cannot only occur within the confines of individual institutions — Dark Matter University is founded to work inside and outside of existing systems to challenge, inform, and reshape our present world toward a better future.
  • Project Row Houses 
    • Project Row Houses is a community platform that enriches lives through art with an emphasis on cultural identity and its impact on the urban landscape. We engage neighbors, artists, and enterprises in collective creative action to help materialize sustainable opportunities in marginalized communities. Project Row Houses occupies a significant footprint in Houston’s Historic Third Ward, one of the city’s oldest African-American neighborhoods. The site encompasses five city blocks and houses 39 structures that serve as a home base to a variety of community-enriching initiatives, art programs, and neighborhood development activities.
  • The Nap Ministry 
    • The Nap Ministry was founded in 2016 by Tricia Hersey and is an organization that examines the liberating power of naps. Their “REST IS RESISTANCE” framework and practice engages with the power of performance art, site-specific installations, and community organizing to install sacred and safe spaces for the community to rest together. We facilitate immersive workshops and curate performance art that examines rest as a radical tool for community healing.  We believe rest is a form of resistance and name sleep deprivation as a racial and social justice issue. 
  • Housing Justice Narrative
    • The Housing Justice Narrative project is a collaboration of PolicyLink, Community Change, and Race Forward, supported by Funders for Housing and Opportunity. 
  • Webs of Care by Ingrid Raphaël
    • a self-paced workshop on naming your needs and relating to and with care
  • The American Riad 
  • We Make the Future
    • We Make the Future (WMTF) was founded in 2021 and is built on the work of Race Class Narrative Action with ASO Communications and Faith in Minnesota and rooted in the research behind the Race Class Narrative. WMTF combines strategic communications and coalition building to develop a shared narrative that motivates our base and persuades the middle. Working in partnership with researchers, content creators, labor and community-based organizations, WMTF aid in the implementation of messaging research by building the capacity of communicators, organizers, and spokespeople.
  • Displaced New Orleans
    • Beginning with the formation of New Orleans and its cartography of violence and racial slavery, DISPLACED traces the geographies of black displacement, dislocation, containment, and disposability in land-use planning, housing policy, and urban development in the city, combining a timeline and atlas highlighting moments of refusal, rupture, and protest.



  • Moor Mother - Circuit City [FULL ALBUM STREAM]
    • Poet and noise musician Moor Mother presents her first theatrical work, a futuristic exploration — part musical, part choreopoem, part play — of public/private ownership, housing, and technology set in a living room in a corporate-owned apartment complex. Framed by Moor mother’s bold poetry performed live by Irreversible Entanglements, Mental Jewelry, Madam Data, and Elon Battle, Circuit City is an afrofuturist song cycle for our current climate.
  • Housing as a Human Right - Radical Imagination Podcast
    • Features Dominique Walker, co-founder of Moms4Housing, discusses how the group is demanding access to housing and taking on investors who treat housing as a commodity they can buy and flip for profit, while a half-million Americans experience homelessness and millions more struggle with skyrocketing rents. Also featuring Tara Raghuveer, the Housing Campaign Director for People’s Action, about the Homes Guarantee, an ambitious proposal to rebuild and reimagine housing
  • Afrofuturism and Housing Justice - Radical Imagination Podcast
    • In this episode, Angela talks to PolicyLink Housing Director Rasheedah Phillips — Afrofuturist, attorney, tenant organizer, policy advocate, and interdisciplinary artist.  Listen in as Angela and Rasheedah discuss how  time can be created, reclaimed, resourced, and redeemed; and the ways that we, collectively, must operate from a place of temporal abundance versus temporal scarcity.
  • Realizing Spatial Reparations - Radical Imagination Podcast 
    • The pursuit of spatial reparations is a journey toward a more equitable future. It is a journey that requires us to acknowledge the past, understand the present, and imagine a future where everyone has access to housing, resources, and opportunities. It is a journey that we can all be a part of and one that will undoubtedly shape the future of housing justice. 


Some of the materials linked in the written section require a purchase or an academic log-in, we’ve noted which materials are freely available.



Interactive Activities

  • Housing Journey Map
    • Create a map of your housing journey with all the places you have lived or called home, and/or places you would like to call home in the future. What does your housing journey say about you? Your identity? Your sense of home? Sense of community?
  • Future Generations Impact Assessment 
    • At the beginning of any project or program, it's important to understand the impact of your activities on generations to come. The worksheet moves you through a series of key questions to assess intended impact, unintended consequences, and community response.
  • HeART & Home Community Art Project 
    • As part of Fair Housing Month, this tool invites artists of all ages to share what home and/or inclusive community means to you. You can find materials and art prompts to guide your creative making. You can use these prompts to encourage your community or individual creative process to reflect on inclusive housing, and its impact on how communities thrive.

Recommended Events (Virtual & In-Person)

  • Join us on April 30 for a Radical Homecoming: Reclaiming Spaces, Identities, and Futures. The event will feature presentations and discussions with artists and scholars working at the intersections of Afrofuturism, Indigenous futurisms, and land and housing justice. Register today!
  • Town Hall on Housing as a Human Right: On April 11, 2024, advocates, experts, and organizers from across the state of California will come together to host a hybrid town hall and discuss the human right to housing in California. Participants will be able to learn more about what a right to housing means, why it matters, and how international human rights principles apply to our work to advance housing justice in California. Speakers include Former United Nations Rapporteur Leilani Farha, California Assemblymember Matt Haney, Policylink’s Housing Director Rasheedah Phillips, and Professor Farah Hassen. Event co-hosts include UCLA’s Promise Institute on Human Rights, Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE), Housing Now!, ACLU California Action, PolicyLink, National Homelessness Law Center, Power CA Action, and Western Center on Law and Poverty. Register for the town hall today.

Prompts for Learning

Below you’ll find some key considerations we are holding throughout our work that may support your exploration this month.

  • How do we apply abolitionist and liberatory frameworks to housing and land systems in order to both dismantle the current oppressive structures and cultivate new worlds grounded in justice and equity, rather than merely rehashing old systems with superficial changes?
  • How do we invoke Black, Brown, and Indigenous spatial and temporal imaginaries in envisioning and creating these new worlds and new futures, imbuing them with the richness of our diverse heritages and visions for a just society?
  • How do we reimagine the ways we collaborate with impacted people and communities to build sustainable power? How do we co-develop new solutions for tackling housing insecurity and creating equitable housing futures outside of the crisis-response model and the sense of time urgency that leaves little time and space for communities and individuals to plan for and live out their futures?
  • How do we shift away from viewing wealth accumulation as the central aim of housing policy, towards a paradigm where decentralization of wealth promotes a more equitable distribution of resources and opportunities?
  • How can we radically reimagine the role of housing, land, and property, not as commodities for wealth generation, but as fundamental rights and platforms for health, cultural expression, and community building?