Welcome the Latest Addition to the Lighthouse Beloved Community CLT Team

Elizabeth Kondzella

  We are thrilled to introduce Elizabeth Kondzella, an Americorps VISTA joining us at the Lighthouse. Over the next year, Elizabeth will be collaborating with the Lighthouse Beloved Community CLT. Her journey led her to the Lighthouse subsequent to her graduation from the University of Mary Washington, where she earned a degree in Anthropology and Historic Preservation. Driven by her commitment to affordable housing, Elizabeth chose to embark on her professional journey at the Lighthouse due to their innovative approaches to expanding housing options in Lynchburg. She shares, "The Lighthouse's transformative work within the Community Land Trust resonates deeply with me, and that played a pivotal role in my decision to be part of this team. Equally important was the genuine rapport the Lighthouse has fostered with the Lynchburg community, showing me the wealth of knowledge that I can gain from them." Elizabeth is eagerly anticipating the realization of the extensive efforts the Lighthouse has invested in the Beloved Community CLT. She expresses, "The ongoing momentum is truly inspiring, making it a remarkable time to contribute to its capacity building!" Additionally, she looks forward to acquainting herself with and learning from the residents of Lynchburg, having moved from Fredericksburg.  

Entertaining Trivia About Elizabeth

Elizabeth’s origins trace back to balancing trays laden with soiled dishes, jubilant newlyweds, and bustling dance floors. Each day begins with the harmony of two snoozed alarms, the aroma of bagels, and heartfelt messages exchanged with loved ones. Her distinctive skill encompasses the art of sewing, entrusted confidences, and dedicated research. Amidst her workspace lingers a wonderfully chaotic desk, a haven for disorganization. Guided by an unwavering dedication to inquisitiveness, she embraces a multitude of questions. She emerged stronger when she relocated to a new city to ardently pursue her passion for affordable housing. Among her proudest achievements stands the accomplishment of graduating with honors from her cherished Alma Mater, the University of Mary Washington.  

Feel free to direct any questions about Lighthouse Beloved Community CLT, or about Community Land Trusts in general, to her by using the contact form belo.: elizabeth@lighthousebelovedcommunity.org.

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2021 Year in Review    |   The Lighthouse Community Center    |   Lynchburg, Virginia
Last year, The Lighthouse made some exciting announcements to demonstrate our allegiance to the communities we serve and forged with you through the impacts of COVID-19. The journey has been transformational and provided us an opportunity to reflect WHY it is so important to be relational in every matter. 

We believe that in the context of community, more permanent healing can take place due to the positive and supportive relationships being built. It is the means by which we deepen the roots of our mission and prune our vision that won’t break when ill winds blow.

Our allegiance to the communities we serve 

Be intentional about commitments moving forward.

Design a roadmap to improve health equity among individuals in communities with high rates of poverty. Public health must reach those who are in areas where transportation, money, and health education is limited. 

As the first wave of COVID-19 was receding in 2021, we were distressed by the acute and long-lasting effects of physical and emotional trauma left untreated for the survivors. FARRR Foundation established Lighthouse Community Health Services (LCHS) at our Lynchburg, VA community center. Phase 1 opened in 2021 providing mental health services including counseling, peer support, substance abuse care, and therapy. 

In February, LCHS will launch Phase 2 - access to primary healthcare that includes medications for preventative care, symptom control, chronic care and health teaching. LCHS is a trauma-informed service-learning and nurse-run clinic with an anchoring purpose to help provide future nurse practitioners with a sense of resilience and cultural competence for not only their career but also their wellbeing. 

Building things that others can take & build upon. 


The great dream of homeownership has always been part of what makes Lynchburg a great place to “live, play and work”. Lighthouse Beloved Community (LBC) is a Community Land Trust (CLT) that offers a pathway towards the great dream of homeownership and economic freedom! Over 300 CLTs have been established across the nation since 1968 making housing attainable, affordable and generational. 

LBC provides equal housing and fair opportunities for limited-income individuals and families in the low/moderate wage earning bracket to build wealth through homeownership. We acquired 55 acres in March 2021 and have spent many months assembling a team of collaborators and strategic partners. We are excited to let you know that construction on the first two homes will begin in April. 

Outcomes, Awards, and Success.

Lighthouse Community Center continues to be a beacon to nearly 15,000 people annually. LHCC offers immediate access to daily carry-out heat-n-eat meals with grab-n-go groceries, hygiene supplies, clothes, homeless backpacks, and bicycles for transportation. Housing and supportive assistance is also provided for individual men transitioning out homelessness, unemployment, domestic violence, and/or also have a criminal background.

Old Dominion Job Corps awarded The Lighthouse “Community Partner of the Year”.

Mental Health of America recognized The Lighthouse as a new affiliate and acknowledged us as the only MHA affiliate in Region 2000. As an affiliate, we can expand immediate access to a warm line 24/7 for mental health or substance abuse support. 

We also offer a free mental health online screening. It’s one of the quickest and easiest ways to determine whether you are experiencing symptoms of a mental health condition. 

866.400.6428 or 833.4PEERVA

The Lighthouse has expanded its reach into Richmond, VA through a collaboration with SEED 4 ALL. Founder, Frank Moseley, is an advocate of wrap-around services that treat the whole person by providing social needs and support, food/groceries, clothes, job training, housing, and counseling for substance abuse and mental health. During the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, we were proud to co-host special events with Frank that fostered new friendships through generous supporters who gave food, backpacks, hygiene supplies, coats, and gifts. 

Our “Mr. fix-it”, Dave, who oversees the Lighthouse “bike-shop” ministry refurbished and provided 116 bikes in 2021. Since 2016, over 1,000 bikes have been given out to help individuals with transportation!

The Lighthouse registered as a local democracy center for voter registration. We are running multiple campaigns to defend voting rights on the local, state and national level. Together with the help of our volunteers, we are educating and mobilizing Black and Brown voters in voter suppression states to take action and protect their right to vote.

Our co-founder and executive director, Martha Brown was awarded the distinction of “Emerging Leader” from the Virginia Housing Alliance in 2021. The VHA is a statewide leader in advocating for the expansion of housing opportunities and ending homelessness in the Commonwealth.

Our founder, Finny Mathew, and Director of Operations, Terrick Moyer were selected as two of the eighteen board members to the National Coalition for the Homeless.

Thank You For Working With Us!

Each year, Time magazine awards a person of the year who, according to the magazine, is someone “who affected the news or our lives the most”. Jason Webb, Principal with Grounded Solutions gave us a listening ear, and reflected, analyzed and weighed up what we do and where we are headed.

For 2021, The Lighthouse acknowledges its “beacon of the year award” with a grateful heart to Jason, and his guiding leadership as our community and capacity partner for Lighthouse Beloved Community. We would also like to acknowledge all our devoted Volunteers and Board Members for raising the standard and demonstrating a life of purpose when work and socializing are blended into a mission and movement. It is an incredible time of opportunity for Workforce Development and Vocational Training! 

Final Notes

Every community has a unique list of social determinants. Collaboration is essential in maximizing resources and preventing overlap or duplication of services. 

Every first Saturday of the month, Unity in Our Community hosts a public forum from all sectors including civic, corporate, not-for-profit, and faith-based that discusses important topics our communities are facing, fighting or fearing. 

 In closing, we ask that you tune in with us and enjoy a short YouTube video that had nearly 34 million hits at the time of its publication in 2004, which by the way, was the same year we were founded! It has inspired “free hug” copycats from around the world. In Australia in 2004, Juan Mann received much international attention for his unusual stunt in Pitt Street, Sydney, where he stood in the street, holding up a sign, saying “Free Hugs”. Juan received so much attention, in fact, that the lead singer of the band Sick Puppies, Shimon Moore, filmed him for Sick Puppies’ song All the Same. In October of 2006, Mann told Oprah Winfrey what happened when he first held up his sign: “The first person who stopped tapped me on the shoulder and told me how her dog had just died that morning. How that morning had been the one-year anniversary of her only daughter dying in a car accident. And how what she needed now, when she felt most alone in the world, was a hug. I got down on one knee, we put our arms around each other and when we parted, she was smiling.” It’s no wonder that Juan Mann received the international attention that he did – while it may seem like the world is in adoration of self-satisfying celebrities, in reality, it is kind-hearted people who we most highly regard.

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