Mission Asset Fund : A comprehensive approach to asset building in an immigrant community NALCAB National Conference, San Francisco, California September 4, 2008
The Mission Asset Fund is the first neighborhood-based, community-led, asset-building organization in the country
Our mission is to expand access to financial services, savings and investment opportunities for residents of the Mission District to build a more secure economic future for themselves, their families and their community
The Mission District
The Mission is a vibrant working-class community with a long history as a gateway for new immigrants; rich in social networks, active civic engagement, and strong nonprofit leadership.
The 1.5 square mile neighborhood is densely populated with over 60,000 residents, including 50 percent Latino and 11 percent Asian/Pacific Islander households.
Nearly one-half of Mission residents are Spanish speakers and more than one-in-three speak only Spanish.
Forty-five percent of Mission residents are foreign-born.
Forging a Community Partnership
Levi Strauss & Co. sold their factory on Valencia St.
$1 million commitment to Levi Strauss Foundation for Mission community development project
MAF committee formed – community leaders and LSF senior staff
Committee held community forums to explore how funds could be used to support residents
MAF Framework Economic Security Access to Financial Services Savings Opportunities Investment Opportunities Continuum of Asset-Building Opportunities Residents Asset Preservation
Key Strategies Mission District Community MAF Board Mission Asset Fund Convener MAF will convene diverse groups of Mission stakeholders in an ongoing dialogue about asset-building gaps and opportunities Connector MAF will connect residents to existing and emerging asset-building opportunities and knowledge Catalyst MAF will catalyze new and innovative asset-building products, services, programs, policies and resources to expand asset-building opportunities.
Mission Asset Alliance
Resource Partnerships Banks Bank of the West Citibank United Commercial Bank Washington Mutual Public Sector Mayor County Supervisors City Treasurer Mayor’s Office of Community Development Foundations/Other F.B. Heron Foundation Friedman Family Fdn. Gerbode Foundation Haas Jr. Fund Haas Sr. Fund Levi Strauss Foundation San Francisco Foundation United Way of the Bay Area Community Residents Business Owners Nonprofits Mission Asset Alliance
Mission Asset Fund Governance Cross-Organizational Collaboration Community Control & Accountability Elected by Members Majority Residents Appointed Experts July 2007 September 2009 Establish and grow MAF membership
… in video
Why don’t we “own” our community?
Nationally, for every $1 dollar in assets held by a white household, a Latino household only has 13.2 cents
45 percent of all Latinos are under-banked, meaning they do not have a savings or checking account – same is true for half of all Latino adults in the Mission
22 percent of all Latinos don’t have a credit history – same is true for 44 percent of all households in the Mission
The number of pawnshops, check-cashers and payday lenders (22) is almost twice the number of bank branches (12) in the neighborhood
Asset-building programs that fit the realities of Mission residents
Matched Savings Accounts (IDAs)
Accessible to individuals in low-income households earning up to 80% of AMI
$1:$2 match towards the following goals:
$1:$1 match to help remove barriers to asset-building, particularly towards the following goals:
Penalties associated with adjusting immigration status
Creating culturally-relevant financial products
‘ Cestas’ or ‘Tandas’ traditionally function as rotating, interest free, credit associations; they are voluntarily formed by a group of participants who agree to make regular contributions to a fund, which is distributed in whole or in part to each contributor in rotation
Cestas Populares will recognize this informal financial activity and report it to credit agencies to help participants create and build mainstream credit scores
Provide wrap-around financial education services and information to help cesta members transition to the financial mainstream
Creating culturally-relevant financial services
Help clients understand and access financial products and services; and to develop long-term financial plans
Train and support peer organizers to connect residents to asset-building opportunities
Provide technical assistance, education and support to worker-owned business and housing co-ops
Take Away Messages
Asset-building programs and policies work for Latino, immigrant communities
MAF is creating culturally-relevant financial products to help bridge the path into the financial mainstream
MAF’s culturally-relevant products are viable alternatives to predatory lenders
José Quiñonez, Executive Director Merle Lawrence, Senior Manager Mission Asset Fund Worldwide Community & Corporate Citizenship Dept. 1500 South Van Ness Ave #200 Levi Strauss & Co./Levi Strauss Foundation San Francisco, CA 94110 1155 Battery Street LS/5 www.missionassetfund.org San Francisco, CA 94111 www.fondopopular.org www.levistrauss.com Contact Information