Letter From the Executive Director - 2015 Grants Update
I wanted to extend a warm thank you to everyone who joined us for our 40th Anniversary Celebration Dinner at the Oakland Asian Cultural Center and 40 Year Retrospective exhibit at the Asian Resource Gallery. EBALDC was founded with fearless passion and values to serve the community by bringing organizations together. We have since deepened our collaborations with long time partners and forged new relationships to serve our most challenging neighborhoods in Oakland through our Healthy Neighborhoods approach. I am heartened to have been able to share our history and successes with you.
In this time of thanksgiving, we reflect on what has been an extraordinary year of collaboration, including the following partnerships and announcements:
- BUILD Health Challenge: EBALDC’s work with Sutter Health and Alameda County Public Health Department was selected for The BUILD Health Challenge. Our collaboration supports the San Pablo Avenue Revitalization Coalition (SPARC), to develop Bold, Upstream, Integrated, Local, and Data-Driven (BUILD) approaches to improving community health. This collaboration seeks to expand the benefit of our work to the surrounding neighborhood.
- Anonymous Donor Makes a Difference: An anonymous donor of The San Francisco Foundation provided a one million dollar award that will allow us to replace the liquor store next door to the California Hotel with affordable housing for families. Until the housing is built, we will work with vendors, SPARC Partners, residents and artists to develop interim uses of the space that employ local residents and create safe places for children and families.
- NeighborWorks America (NWA) Affiliation: EBALDC has been awarded affiliation with the national NeighborWorks America network. We are working with NWA’s Healthy Neighborhoods initiative to inform our use of public health measures as a lens to focus our work. This includes our ongoing organizational development to strengthen the diversity of our organization, and to help long-time residents stay in the neighborhoods that we serve.
Our recent partnerships for community development include:
- Assisting The Unity Council with Ninety-four family apartments at Fruitvale Transit Village;
- Consulting with People’s Community Market to develop a fresh food market in West Oakland, and the Greenlining Institute to develop their new offices in downtown Oakland;
- Purchase of 53 apartments to be operated as affordable workforce housing to address the current crisis of economic displacement, and establishment of a $10 million fund to acquire more properties for workforce stabilization; and
- A proposal with Urban Core Development to create a mixed-income development where at least 25% of the units are affordable to low-income households at East 12th Street and 2nd Avenue, and to focus our resources on acquisition and development of more workforce housing in the immediate neighborhood.
I am thankful for your ongoing support and contribution to our work in building healthy neighborhoods. Without your partnership and support, we could never have accomplished as much as we have over the last 40 years.
Joshua Simon, Executive Director