The Zanesville Think Tank on Poverty (ZTTP) was formed in 2018 by local leaders who decided to start a Think Tank in the region to address the structural issues that keep people in need. The ZTTP generated a strong leadership team, working with a range of directly impacted people, social services, community leaders, and partners to work on mapping the needs and challenges in the community related to poverty. The Zanesville Think Tank on Poverty launched the Zanesville Citizen's Housing Connection in 2020 to assist people facing eviction and housing insecurity. The ZTTP also launched a new entity called the Neighborhood Housing Group (NHG), which will work in collaboration with the ZTTP and help coordinate and pursue specific community development projects, like affordable housing.
The ZTTP has had government leaders, city council, legal aid, criminal justice, United Way, and a range of community service providers attend our meetings and participate. A poverty simulation with the United Way, and engagement with the city about rumored evictions of some of the most vulnerable in the city, moved the ZTTP into the issues of affordable housing and renter's rights in 2018.
We have voted and decided to work on a number of issues, including housing, reentry, and other topics related to addressing homelessness. We are also concerned with the impact of substance abuse and addiction, especially on children and families.
The ZTTP has presented our work to the City Council and has been in dialogue with the prosecuting attorney working on rehousing issues. We are presently working on educating residents and renters' of their rights, supporting the development of low-income housing, events that address harm reduction and mental health stigma, and other projects that would meet the needs of low-income income residents.
ZTTP monthly meetings are free and open to the public. We also have monthly leadership meetings that are open to anyone interested in joining the leadership of the ZTTP and rolling up your sleeves to help build this work.
For dates of upcoming meetings or more information on events, please follow the ZTTP on Facebook, join the mailing list for ZTTP, or email us directly at [email protected]
Are you or Someone You Know Facing Eviction?
The Zanesville Citizen's Housing Connection (ZCHC) will work with you to help keep you off the street. We offer education on your rights, linkages to local resources, and someone to work with you and your landlord to find a way to keep you in your home or avoid an eviction on your record. Don’t wait until your day in court. Contact ZCHC now. We will work as hard as you do to keep you in your home.
Zanesville Community Resource Guide -- click here for the resource guide From Muskingum Valley Educational Service Center – mvesc.org - updated 8/1/2021
GIVE US A CALL OR EMAIL US FOR MORE INFORMATION | (740) 273-8136 | [email protected]
In the News
Times Recorder: Property Taxes Overvalued in Minority Zanesville Areas, National Analysis Shows (July 2021)
A nationwide analysis shows property taxes have been overvalued in low-income, minority areas of Zanesville. As part of the University of Chicago's nationwide Property Tax Project, an evaluation of Muskingum County property taxes showed the least expensive homes were valued at a rate of nearly twice as much as the most expensive. To read more, click here.
Times Recorder: Report: Things looking up in smaller cities, but what about Zanesville? (Jan 2020)
(Mason) wants to have discussion with local banks to help find a solution for refurbishing homes that can be sold to eligible home buyers. Mason is encouraged by local support groups, such as The Friends of Putnam and the Think Tank on Property, who have approached him with ideas on ways to improve housing stock." Communities are better with more owner-occupied structures," Mason said. . . To read more, click here.
Whiz News: SOS Zanesville Seeks to End Homeless Crisis (Dec. 2019)
There are over 200 Zanesville residents who are currently homeless. A new grassroots organization is striving to bring awareness to the homelessness crisis in the city while partnering with homeless individuals. SOS Zanesville is attempting to bring the issue of homelessness to light and help secure affordable housing for area residents. Marcia Hartman, an SOS Zanesville Member, says one key challenge of the crisis is a low rate of compensation across the area... To read more, click here.
Zanesville Times Recorder: Formerly homeless woman turns from addiction to activism (Nov 2019)
Samantha Crawford left prison in 2013 with a "stay out plan," not a "get out plan." After nearly 30 months of incarceration, Crawford earned a judicial release hearing with Licking County Judge Thomas Marcelain, during which she requested Marcelain to send her back to the Licking County Jail so she could wait for a bed to open at the Courage House in Newark. She completed the program in about four months and moved to the Salvation Army, where she filled out two job applications a day and volunteered at her dad's body shop during her free time. . . To read more, click here
Y City News: Think Tank aims to address housing needs with new program funded by City grant (Oct 2019)
The Zanesville Think Tank on Poverty is in the process of establishing a program aimed at identifying housing issues in the community. After recently being awarded about $27,000 through a City of Zanesville Community Development Block Grant over the next two years to create the Zanesville Citizen Housing Connection, the group is finalizing plans to launch in January. “We proposed this idea for the Zanesville Citizen Housing Connection because when we started the Zanesville Think Tank and we asked people what’s keeping them and the community in poverty, the lack of affordable housing was the thing that came out on top,”. . . To read more, click here.
Y City News: New Think Tank looks to fight poverty in Muskingum CountyWhen Melissa Rice walked into a room full of middle-class, college educated professionals for a meeting meant to discuss the poverty-related issues in Muskingum County, the single mom who works a part-time, minimum wage job didn’t think anyone there could understand the struggles she goes through on a daily basis... To read more, click here.