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Review and Analysis: Resilient Communities Grantmaking Portfolio (2020-2022)

July 27, 2023

The Sozosei Foundation launched its Resilient Communities Program (RCP) in the summer of 2020 at the request of Otsuka America Pharmaceutical, Inc. (OAPI), with the intent of evolving the company's longstanding commitment to philanthropy. The goal of the program was to refine the company's philanthropic commitment by designing guidelines and priorities to support diverse, under-resourced communities where the company has a presence. Over the two years of its grantmaking, the program provided over $1 million in grants and served over 177,000 people across six target communities.

Newark, New Jersey, The Cost of Gun Violence: The Direct Cost to Tax Payers

June 2, 2023

The National Institute for Criminal Justice Reform (NICJR) conducted this detailed analysis that documents the government expenses accompanying every injury shooting in Newark. In tracking the direct costs per shooting incident, NICJR has deliberately used the low end of the range for each expense. This study does not include the loss-of-production costs when the victim or suspect were working at the time of the incident. Nationally, those costs have been estimated at an additional $1-2 million for each shooting incident. This means that the calculated cost of $2,188,700 for a homicide in Newark is a conservative estimate; the real cost is likely even higher.

How Higher Mortgage Interest Rates Can Widen Racial Gaps in Housing Wealth: The Case of Newark, New Jersey

August 30, 2022

Trends in macroeconomic conditions and policy have helped to boost longer-term interest rates, including mortgage rates, over the past year. This has important implications for the wealth gap between white and Black or Hispanic households. The standard narrative is that higher interest rates, especially when combined with higher house prices and lower incomes, reduce homebuying affordability for Black and Hispanic households relative to white households. And this, in turn, implies that these households of color will find that achieving homeownership has become more difficult, thereby widening the racial wealth gap. This report illustrates that under a higher mortgage rate regime, the pace of principal reduction is slower over most of the life of a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage. Using data covering purchase loans on one-to-four family mortgages across the city of Newark, NJ, we also show that Black and Hispanic households buying in Newark obtain higher mortgage rates relative to their white peers and therefore pay more in interest for a slower principal reduction. In response, we suggest that more local policymakers assess the benefits of interest-rate buy-downs to improve affordability, close racial wealth gaps in housing, and better insulate historically marginalized communities from macroeconomic shocks.

Continuing Efforts To Slow Violent Crime: Promising Innovations From 3 Democrat-Led Cities

July 27, 2022

Historically, the United States' approach to crime has been reactionary and overreliant on criminal legal sanctions, and it has failed to adequately address the social, health, and behavioral factors that drive crime. Still, as the country continues to grapple with a rise in gun violence, a new wave of "tough-on-crime" rhetoric has emerged, blaming progressive policies for the increase in violent crime. While violent crime rose across the country in 2020, progressive leaders in cities are investing resources into proven public health and community-based solutions to stop gun violence before it starts, and these cities are seeing early signs of success in stemming the tide.Rather than accept calls for tough-on-crime policies, leaders in Houston, Boston, and Newark, New Jersey, have taken a more holistic approach to prevent violence before it starts. These cities are three examples of jurisdictions that have implemented comprehensive public safety plans focused not only on stopping violent crime but also on prioritizing community-driven and public health-focused innovations that break the cycle of violence.

The Future of Public Safety: Exploring the Power & Possibility of Newark’s Reimagined Public Safety Ecosystem

June 15, 2022

There was a time not so long ago when Newark, like many other cities, was plagued with extraordinary violence, deep-seated poverty, and ailing social systems.To look at Newark today is to see a city in resurgence, lifted by its proud, resilient people. At the heart of this evolution is a fierce hunger for safety — a safety defined by thriving neighborhoods and not just the absence of violence. Leaders across the nation, and the media, have noticed the trajectory, but the stories about Newark are almost always about one or two aspects of the work. In fact, what has happened in Newark — especially over the last eight years — is much more significant.This report describes Newark's community-based ecosystem of public safety, identifying and engaging with key components of its systems of support. In particular, we document how Newarkers have leveraged the power and possibility of their experience and connections, as well as those of the community at large, to break local cycles of trauma and violence through healing and reconciliation. 

2019 Newark Kids Count: A City profile of Child Well-Being

January 1, 2019

This data book assesses the well-being of children in Newark, New Jersey and provides the latest statistics and trend data in areas such as demographics, family economic security, food insecurity, child health, child protection, childcare, education, and teens. It also features a special section on young men of color in Newark in an attempt to identify how they respond to opportunities and challenges and understand the causes and implications of systematic inequality. 

Pathways to Progress: The Portfolio and the Field of Youth Economic Opportunity

April 1, 2016

In 2014, the Citi Foundation launched Pathways to Progress, a three-year, $50 million initiative in the United States to help 100,000 low-income youth -- ages 16 to 24 -- develop the workplace skills and leadership experience necessary to compete in a 21st century economy.To achieve its ambitious goal, the Foundation enacted a multi-tiered strategy in ten cities: Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, Newark, St. Louis, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. The U.S. strategy also includes complementary national and local investments, including the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, the National Academy Foundation, and the National Association for Urban Debate Leagues. In addition to the core and complementary program investments, the Citi Foundation's multitiered strategy includes substantial volunteer engagement by Foundation employees, and a significant communications platform -- augmenting grantee organizations' efforts to share their impact with the field.In its efforts to advance youth economic opportunity on a significant scale, the Citi Foundation has invested in solutions that offer promise of sizeable and replicable impact.

Green Schoolyards: A Growing Movement Supporting Health, Education, and Connection with Nature

March 21, 2016

In May 2015, a national summit convened in Chicago to take an in-depth look at green schoolyards. At this summit, practitioners, advocates, researchers and others shared their knowledge and experiences and explored innovative approaches for advancing green schoolyards. This report shares the collective experience and knowledge of the participants and explores some of these new and emerging opportunities.Successful green schoolyard programs in six cities across the country are examined in case studies in this report. These studies distill important factors that helped to determine project success, including diverse partnerships and funding mechanisms, carefully leveraged policy at every level and documented impact that wins support.

Summer Jobs Connect: Building Sustainable Banking and Savings Programs in Summer Youth Employment

January 28, 2016

Across the country, municipal Summer Youth Employment Programs (SYEPs) provide hundreds of thousands of young people, often from low-income communities, with short-term work experience and a regular paycheck. Building off this existing, widespread infrastructure and connection to young people, the Citi Foundation and the Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund (CFE Fund) saw an opportunity to connect young workers to bank accounts and targeted financial education, turning this large-scale youth employment program into a linchpin for building long-term positive financial behaviors. More broadly, Summer Jobs Connect (SJC) demonstrates how banking access efforts can be embedded in municipal infrastructure, a core goal of the CFE Fund's national Bank On initiative.

Lessons Learned From EMT Career Pathway Programs for Young Adults

July 24, 2015

This case study focuses on challenges and opportunities for young adults in emergency medical services, a part of the health care sector that includes emergency medical technicians (EMTs) and paramedics. Specifically, this case study highlighta EMT training partnerships implemented by CareerWorks: Greater Newark Workforce Funders Collaborative in New Jersey and the Bay Area Workforce Funding Collaborative (BAWFC) in California. It will also integrate lessons learned from a similar project implemented several years ago by SkillWorks: Partners for a Productive Workforce in Boston, MA. Our goal is to share lessons learned and draw conclusions aimed at informing future efforts to train and prepare young adults for emergency medical services (EMS) or similar career pathways.

Pathways to Progress: Setting the Stage for Impact

June 1, 2015

Through this three-year Pathways to Progress portfolio review, Equal Measure will Provide a comprehensive narrative about the reach the Citi Foundation investment has had on youth, individual programs, and the grantee organizations.  We also will examine how this investment fits within, and contributes to, the broader fields of youth, leadership, and 21st century workplace skills development.

The Integration Initiative Final Outcome Report

October 1, 2014

A new report represents the culmination of the first three years of Living Cities' Integration Initiative, supporting approaches with the potential to transform the lives of low-income communities.