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We are LISC—the Local Initiatives Support Corporation. It may be a mouthful, but our name does, in fact, say it all. We are a national organization with a grassroots focus. Bay Area LISC is one of 31 local LISC sites throughout the country, and with residents and partners, we forge resilient and inclusive communities of opportunity across the Bay Area - great places to live, work, do business, and raise families.
The Catalyst Housing Fund marked a leap forward this week, announcing its first outside investor: The San Francisco Foundation (TSFF). The near $20 million fund, whose mission is to secure economic opportunity and affordable housing for Silicon Valley residents, began as a partnership of Envision Transform Build, City of East Palo Alto and Facebook. LISC manages the fund along with Housing Trust Silicon Valley. TSFF’s investment will help propel the development and preservation of hundreds of affordable homes in East Palo Alto and Menlo Park, near Facebook’s HQ.
A new study on race and economic mobility in the United States by economists Raj Chetty and Nathaniel Hendren stresses the role that neighborhoods can play in closing the country’s yawning, race-based opportunity gap. In the blog that follows, David Greenberg, LISC’s new director of Research and Evaluation, unpacks the lessons of the study, and posits how the findings can help guide the work of LISC and its partners going forward.
In recent decades, the historically under-invested Bayview neighborhood of San Francisco has had few opportunities to offer its youth. But a creative new program, “Project Wreckless,” is enlisting at-risk young people to rehab classic cars, and offers job training, scholarships and mentoring to boot. All in a formerly abandoned ex-factory that’s beginning to look pretty spiffy, thanks in part to a façade grant from LISC.