Two of Houston’s iconic figures in the music industry will embark on a community service project set to make a lasting impact in their hometown. Former Destiny’s Child members Beyoncé Knowles and Kelly Rowland have joined forces on a housing project known as The Knowles-Rowland House Project, aimed to provide permanent housing for individuals experiencing homelessness in Houston.
The Knowles-Rowland House Project will be developed at Bread of Life Inc.’s headquarters on Crawford St., thanks to a generous $7.2 million allocation from the American Rescue Plan. Bread of Life, is an organization dedicated to serving healthy meals and offering support to those facing homelessness in downtown Houston. This initiative is in collaboration with Beyoncé’s own charity, BeyGOOD, further demonstrating her commitment to making a positive difference in her community.
“These housing units in Precinct One will be available to people who experience homelessness,” said County Commissioner Rodney Ellis. “In our precinct, 580 people experience unsheltered homelessness, representing the largest share amongst all four precincts. These individuals live in places not meant for human habitation – in parks, under bridges, in abandoned buildings, or on the street. They face higher rates of chronic physical and mental illnesses and substance use. Permanent supportive housing projects like the Knowles-Rowland House are critical because they go beyond raising the roof.”
Ellis said the “supportive” in supportive housing means case management, life skills training, job skills development, and counseling.
“This helps break the cycle of chronic homelessness by equipping people to pursue meaningful work, recover from mental health and substance use challenges, and find stability,” Ellis said.
Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo commended the efforts of Beyoncé and Kelly Rowland, emphasizing the significance of their involvement in addressing the issue of homelessness. She highlighted the 20% decrease in homelessness in Houston and the county since the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, underscoring the impact of initiatives like The Knowles-Rowland House Project.
The project will provide 31 permanent housing units and offer comprehensive support services to residents. These services include case managers, peer specialists, service specialists, and various support systems such as transportation, and mental, physical, and behavior health assistance. An official launch announcement is scheduled for September coinciding with Beyoncé’s return to her hometown for her highly anticipated Renaissance World Tour shows at NRG Stadium.
Construction is scheduled to begin in October 2023 and be completed by July 2024.
“Beyoncé and Kelly are hometown heroes who know how to raise the roof, and for the past 20-plus years, Beyoncé Knowles, Kelly Rowland, and their families have poured millions into community-centered projects built on a simple premise: housing is a human right. In Harris County, everyone should have a safe and healthy place to call home. This project will move Harris County closer to realizing its vision for a vibrant, inclusive Harris County where everyone has the opportunity to thrive in the sanctity and safety of their home,” Ellis added.
Beyoncé and Rowland have consistently served their community over the years. In 2017, post Hurricane-Harvey, Beyoncé along with fellow Destiny’s Child bandmate Michelle Williams and her mother Tina Knowles-Lawson, participated in serving food to people affected by the disaster. Kelly Rowland collaborated with the Knowles family to establish the Survivor Foundation over a decade earlier to provide transitional housing for victims of Hurricane Katrina.