Last month, Community Vision and Genesis LA held a three-day convening in Los Angeles to kick off the third California Community-Owned Real Estate (CalCORE) cohort. Launched in 2021, CalCORE is an initiative developed by Community Vision and Genesis LA to advance locally owned and controlled real estate. 

CalCORE brings together cohorts of community-based developers, with a focus on Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC)-led Community Development Corporations (CDCs) and Community Land Trusts (CLTs). By providing networking opportunities, cohort training, personalized one-on-one project support and more, CalCORE works to address capital and capacity barriers that many small and emergent community-based developers and developers of color face.  

Twenty-one nonprofit organizations from across California attended the convening, which officially wrapped up CalCORE’s second cohort and marked the beginning of the third group, CalCORE III. While CalCORE’s second cohort focused on acquiring and operating commercial real estate such as retail and mixed-use spaces, the 10 organizations in CalCORE III will focus on small site affordable housing preservation and preparation for the state-run Foreclosure Intervention Housing Preservation Program (FIHPP)

During the three days in LA, CalCORE participants had opportunities for networking and mutual learning, a full day of training and speakers on community development and financing at Art Share LA, and a tour of local developments. This included the Little Tokyo Service Center in Downtown LA  and Las Fotos, Latinx with Plants and Inclusive Acton for the City in Boyle Heights. 

CalCORE II participants also had the chance to share about their experiences, learnings and progress over the duration of their cohort. The organizations celebrated many wins, including several completed acquisitions. 

Additionally, CalCORE II participant Dishgamu Humboldt Community Land Trust shared how they have seen historic Indigenous land return victories for the Wiyot tribe, and they are now creating housing for former foster youth on ancestral land. The organization was recently profiled in Dwell Magazine and Next City. 

During the convening, the Dishgamu Humboldt CLT’s Advancement Manager, David Cobb, shared that because of participation in CalCORE, the organization gained the confidence to apply for a grant through Project Homekey, a California state financing opportunity administered by the California Department of Housing & Community Development (HCD). Dishgamu Humboldt CLT applied for and received a $14 million grant that is now funding their new youth housing project in Eureka.

As CalCORE’s third cohort launches, the organizations will focus on preparing for FIHPP.  Over the next few years, FIHPP will provide approximately $400 million in grants and loans to nonprofits to acquire, rehabilitate and preserve affordable housing in foreclosure or at risk of foreclosure. This CalCORE cohort will provide training and resources for community-based developers to help them prepare to leverage this opportunity.

Learn more about CalCORE III participants: