"There is opportunity in every community," says Tara Collins, communications director at RUPCO, the region's leading affordable housing and community developer. "At RUPCO, we don't define communities, we help them define themselves." Among RUPCO's many programs and services, 2017 saw the beginning of a project to revitalize Newburgh's historic East End. "All the way down Broadway to the riverfront, there was block after block, rowhouse after rowhouse of vacant historic buildings with windows blown out, just really unloveable conditions," Collins says. "But Newburgh is a diamond in the rough. It has all this potential, it just needed a little push in that direction," Collins says. In an ongoing collaboration, RUPCO is partnering with the NYS Homes & Community Renewal, Newburgh Community Land Bank, and Safe Harbors of the Hudson to create a scatter-site development of 45 apartments in 15 historic buildings over a five-block area. "It all starts at home. When we have a safe secure place to live to call home, the rest of our lives blossom—we go from surviving to thriving," she says. "We can choose to make a stand in communities that some people have written off. With a little help and a lot of vision and patience, we are hoping this phoenix of Newburgh will rise out of the ashes."