Housing Market Interventions and Residential Mobility in the San Francisco Bay Area
The San Francisco Bay Area is an extreme case of a constrained housing market, with job growth outpacing new housing production and resulting in supply shortages and price spikes that date back at least 30 years. The Bay Area’s structural shortage of housing that is affordable at all income levels affects the regional economy by increasing commuting and housing costs, which creates barriers to full economic participation, especially for lower income workers. An array of solutions have been considered, including subsidized housing production, affordable housing preservation, and tenant ...
Best practices in the design and implementation of learning communities
Many multisite initiatives supported by national foundations and the federal government have included some type of cross-site convening or platform for peer learning within the design, often referred to as ?learning communities.? This report, based upon a literature review and interviews with 15 individuals who have had experience in designing and implementing learning communities and communities of practice, looks at how learning communities have been designed, the challenges faced when implementing this work, and what have been some of the best practices in terms of building team cohesion, ...
Boosting the power of youth paychecks: integrating financial capability into youth employment programs
This paper summarizes the results of the first-ever quasi-experimental design study of a youth financial capability initiative seamlessly integrated into a youth workforce development program. MyPath Savings supports low-income working youth to bank, save, and build their financial confidence through a comprehensive model that includes financial education, goal-setting, and non-custodial accounts. MyPath provided technical assistance and training to prepare nonprofits to implement MyPath Savings, as well as to the financial institution partner, Self-Help Federal Credit Union, to ensure the ...
Comparative advantages: creating synergy in community development
The goal of this paper is to provide insights and tools to help community development practitioners, policymakers, funders, and other stakeholders better understand how to maximize the effectiveness and impact of different types of organizations at the local and regional level. Understanding your comparative advantages is critical to addressing complex community development initiatives from foreclosure prevention, to sustainable energy, to urban education, to job creation.
Urban sustainability and community development: Creating healthy sustainable urban communities
Increased urbanization has also led to many challenges for urban residents. In the United States, land use and zoning, transportation and infrastructure, lack of affordable housing, and disinvestment have severely affected the quality of life of poor urban populations. Despite these challenges, opportunities do exist to make economically disadvantaged urban communities more sustainable, livable, and healthy. This working paper discusses the challenges facing urban communities and then considers the opportunities that exist to develop sustainable urban communities given our current economic ...
Leveraging the power of place: using pay for success to support housing mobility
Families who use housing vouchers to move from areas of concentrated poverty to better-resourced neighborhoods have been shown to experience higher earnings and improved health. Housing mobility programs increase the effectiveness of housing vouchers by providing education and support to voucher holders facing barriers to such ?opportunity? moves. This working paper proposes using a Pay for Success financing mechanism to increase investment in housing mobility programs based on the hypothesis that health care savings stemming from a positive mobility outcome?specifically related to diabetes ...
Charter school tax credit: Investing in human capital
This working paper considers how two existing policy tools--investment tax credits and charter schools--could be combined to raise operating funds for charter schools that successfully close the poverty-related academic achievement gap. Some charter schools have succeeded in dramatically improving low-income student performance (those run by KIPP, Achievement First, and the Harlem Children's Zone, for example). However, these successful schools differ significantly in type and approach. As a result, it is difficult to identify a single, or combination of variables in any one charter that, if ...
When Home is the Most Dangerous Place: How a Community Development Organization Learned to Get the Lead Out
The debacle of lead-poisoned children in Flint, Michigan reminded us of the insidious and permanent impact of this toxic poison on a child?s brain. However, millions of children (and seniors) living in older homes, especially ones with flaking paint, are still being lead poisoned. Today, the vast majority of children who become poisoned by lead come from lower-income families of color?those least able to shoulder this added burden. This is where community-based nonprofit organizations?especially the 1,000+ groups that weatherize and retrofit older homes across the country?can step in and play ...
Creating a marketplace: information exchange and the secondary market for community development loans
There is a lack of information exchange between community development lenders and capital investors that limits the growth of a secondary market for community development assets. This obstacle limits the ability of community development lenders to tap into the virtually endless capital resources of the secondary market, thereby limiting the valuable services these organizations provide to underserved communities.
Impact investing for small, place-based fiduciaries: the research study initiated by the United Way of the Bay Area
Most fiduciaries of institutional funds (public-defined benefit plans, endowment funds, and quasi-private/public foundations) for many reasons have been reluctant to adopt Impact Investing, Social Responsible Investing (SRI), or Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) factors in their investment policies and philosophies. Primarily, such social impact factors are deemed to be limiting to the opportunity set of investments and therefore imply a financial return that is potentially substandard. This paper is the result of a challenge to identify if and how a model portfolio could be built ...