About us

Our mission is to end homelessness in New York City, now. Homelessness is on the rise in every neighborhood in New York City. Families, especially children, bear the brunt of the crisis, accounting for more than a third of shelter residents.

Unsurprisingly, the dual health and economic crises caused by the COVID-19 pandemic — both of which disproportionately impact Black and Hispanic families — only exacerbate the homelessness crisis.

However, this year’s municipal election creates an unprecedented opportunity to change course. With 41 of the 59 municipal offices up for election, including an open mayoral seat, there's an opportunity to work together to build the public support and political will necessary to end our city’s homelessness crisis.

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By bringing New Yorkers together, we can collectively voice our support for focusing on housing, instead of shelter. As the new mayor works to rebuild the city in the wake of the pandemic, they must remember that a family’s housing stability, health and safety are all interconnected. Housing is health care.

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Our story

We met while working at the Department of Homeless Services, but our story starts much earlier than that.

Caitlin was first introduced to the homelessness crisis while working for Community Solutions, where she saw firsthand the need for data-driven, collaborative solutions to tackle homelessness in New York City.

As a student of public health, Erin saw just how critical a role housing and housing status can play in the short- and long-term health of the most vulnerable communities in New York City. While working for the city, it became abundantly clear that decades-old policy perpetuated a broken system that simply manages homelessness.

For decades,

New York City allowed the Right to Shelter mandate to dictate the city’s response to homelessness, ultimately forcing people into shelters and making it nearly impossible for those facing homelessness to find permanent housing immediately. In other words, the system isn’t set up to actually end homelessness.

We knew that in order to change the system, we must show people what’s possible and give those in power the tools and resources to do something about it. That’s why we started RxHome. We know what works, but we also know that we must educate and provide the resources to candidates and New Yorkers. This year’s municipal elections provide the perfect opportunity to do just that.

Through candidate and voter education about the crisis and policy solutions that work, we can build the public demand and political will necessary to end homelessness in New York City.

We know what works to end homelessness —

a homeless service system that puts permanent housing ahead of temporary shelter. Wanting to build on the important existing efforts to combat homelessness, we engaged and ultimately became a fiscal sponsee of Community Solutions, an organization that has led successful efforts to end homelessness using these strategies in communities around the world, including Bergen County, NJ and Bakersfield, CA.

As former public servants,

we know how to effectively implement these solutions in New York City. We know how to solve New York City’s homelessness crisis, and we are committed to helping every New Yorker — especially our future elected leaders — understand that ending homelessness in New York City is not only possible, but imperative to the health and stability of our city.

Our team

Caitlin LaCroix

Co-Founder & Homeless Solutions Policy Director

Caitlin LaCroix is the Co-founder and Homeless Solutions Policy Director at RxHome, where she helps policymakers, advocacy groups, and health care organizations use policy as a tool to prevent and end homelessness.

Caitlin's expertise comes from her more than 10 years of experience working with key non-profit, campaign and government organizations working to end homelessness. As Chief of Staff at Community Solutions, Caitlin learned firsthand about the need for data-driven, collaborative policy solutions to end homelessness that eliminate systemic barriers and bring those most impacted to the table.

Caitlin brought these lessons to the NYC Department of Homeless Services, where she served as Policy Advisor and proposed new strategies to help families and individuals experiencing homelessness access independent, permanent housing. She also developed strategies for redeveloping and reusing shelter sites as affordable housing. Caitlin started her career at Community Resource Exchange (CRE) and learned the ropes of the political world at Tusk Strategies, a NYC campaign consulting firm.

Caitlin received her BA from the College of the Holy Cross and a Master of Public Administration, focusing on Urban Policy, from Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs.

Caitlin is often accompanied on zoom calls by her dog, Franny.

Erin Kelly

Co-Founder & Director of Health Policy and Partnerships

Erin Kelly is a Co-founder and the Director of Health Policy and Partnerships for RxHome, where she draws on her health care and government experience to advocate for solutions rooted in health and housing policy collaboration.

Most recently, Erin worked as a Senior Advisor at the New York City Department of Social Services, and as a Health Policy Analyst at the New York City Independent Budget Office, where she learned the intricacies of City budgeting and the urgency of the public health crisis of homelessness in New York City.

Erin has a BA in Biochemistry from Wesleyan University and a Master of Public Health, focusing on domestic Health Policy, from Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health.

You can often find Erin boxing, baking or drinking cold coffee.

Asia Thomas

Director of Organizing

Asia Thomas is RxHome’s Director of Organizing and comes to this role after spending more than 15 years organizing in some of New York City's most marginalized communities.

Prior to joining RxHome, Asia was the Deputy Director of Organizing at StudentsFirstNY, where she galvanized parents to speak out against the powers that be about the inequalities embedded in the New York City public school system.

Asia also worked as a Case Manager at ResCare Workforce Services' WeCare Program, where she worked with individuals who were in danger of losing their benefits, needed job training, or required preventive services to keep their benefits active.

Asia’s extensive organizing and community advocacy experience also includes working with New York City's Administration for Children, the Abyssinian Development Corporation and ACORN. Asia earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Media and Communications from Old Westbury State University of New York.

When Asia is not advocating for marginalized and underserved communities, you can find her winning at family game nights.

Zayba Abdulla

Director of Strategy & Operations

Zayba Abdulla is the Director of Strategy and Operations for RxHome.

Zayba cares about creating cities and communities that work for everyone. After years of experience in federal and local government, Zayba is excited to be working for an organization that is crafting policies that challenge the status quo.

Previously she worked at USAID on President Obama’s global hunger initiative and for New York City’s Department of Homeless Services.

Zayba has a BA in Urban Studies from Barnard College and a Master in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.

Zayba’s goal for 2021 is to learn how to bike in New York City — wish her luck!

Keyla Marte

Community Organizer

Strong, empowering, inspiring are some of the words to characterize Keyla Marte. She is a proud Latina, single-parent raised, first-generation college graduate.

Previously, Keyla worked at The Future Project, a national nonprofit whose mission is to support people—starting with young people—in discovering and activating their power to make a change. The organization aims to inspire, equip, and connect people to discover their power and use it to build a better future.

Keyla Marte has a passion for helping women of color run for office, advocating for marginalized communities and making constructive reform in public policy. She has experience working with the New York Legislature and Service Employees International Union and more.

When she is not amplifying the voices of marginalized communities, you can find her building her faith, dancing, and empowering women to be financially free.

Griffin Paterson

Community Organizer

Griffin spent the 2020 election cycle working for the Pennsylvania Democratic Party in a top-20 presidential battleground county in the U.S. During this time, he also helped work on two congressional, four state senate, and one state house campaign as well.

Griffin also has worked for the Presidential Inaugural Committee, as a constituent services intern for Congressman Jim Himes (CT-04) and as social media director in a mayoral race in Connecticut.

Griffin has a BA in Political Science from Trinity College with a minor in Hispanic Studies.

In his spare time, Griffin likes to play soccer and basketball.

Caneese Betances

Student Canvasser

Jacob Arevalo

Student Canvasser

Jaylen Collins

Student Canvasser

Patience McFarlane

Student Canvasser

Steffani Rouse

Student Canvasser

Xyaire Ford

Student Canvasser