How This Affordable Housing Group is Supporting its Residents during COVID-19
Managing Partner Eli Bronfman: “Lincoln Avenue Capital does not just invest in properties. We invest in our communities for the long term.”
When the COVID-19 pandemic broke out in the United States and millions of working families were heavily impacted, mission-driven affordable housing operator Lincoln Avenue Capital knew that it needed to take action to help the communities in which it invests.
One of the nation’s fastest-growing affordable housing developers, investors, and operators—with 47 properties and 30,000 residents across 10 states—Lincoln Avenue Capital has made investing in communities one of its guiding principles.
Lincoln Avenue Capital worked quickly to provide crucial support to its residents, donating produce and diapers, and to nonprofits in Los Angeles, donating office furniture and technology—demonstrating how businesses can drive social change during this uncertain moment and beyond.
“During this difficult time, millions of hard-working individuals are doing their absolute best to provide for their families,” said Lincoln Avenue Capital CEO Jeremy Bronfman. “Since the COVID-19 pandemic broke out, Lincoln Avenue Capital has been looking for ways that we can provide extra support to our residents through this period. We firmly believe that socially-minded businesses have an important responsibility to do our part in keeping families safe and healthy during this national crisis.”
To help support its residents, Jeremy Bronfman said, Lincoln Avenue Capital donated more than 11,000 diapers to residents at five of its Miami-Dade County properties in May.
Diapers pose a significant financial burden to working families, and current federal guidelines offer little reprieve. Because the federal government does not classify diapers as an essential item, families are unable to use food stamps or other federally-subsidized assistance programs to procure them.
To help resident families stay safe and healthy during the pandemic, Lincoln Avenue Capital partnered with the Miami Diaper Bank, a local nonprofit dedicated to collecting and distributing diapers to low-income families, to procure and distribute diapers at its properties.
“Lincoln Avenue Capital does not just invest in properties. We invest in our communities for the long term,” said Lincoln Avenue Capital Managing Partner Eli Bronfman. “We believe it is vital to work closely with non-profit partners on the ground in the communities where we are invested. LAC is proud to have collaborated with the Miami Diaper Bank to donate thousands of diapers to families that need them.”
The Miami Diaper Bank echoed Eli Bronfman’s sentiment, emphasizing that diapers are essential supplies for families.
“We are thankful for organizations like Lincoln Avenue Capital that share our mission of helping babies stay clean, dry and healthy, especially during these trying times,” said Miami Diaper Bank Executive Director Gabriela Rojas. “We are grateful that they came to us for this opportunity to provide this essential necessity for these families.”
Lincoln Avenue Capital also mobilized to help tackle another growing challenge among its residents—food insecurity. With an estimated 40 million Americans out of work, accessing nutritious food has quickly become a significant challenge.
Recognizing that complex issues like food insecurity can affect whole communities, Lincoln Avenue Capital worked closely in April with Florida-based JGL to donate 20,000 pounds of fresh produce to 5,500 residents at 12 affordable housing properties in South Florida—including neighboring properties that it does not own. “Over the course of this pandemic, millions of hard-working families have been faced with food insecurity,” said Jeremy Bronfman. “We’re incredibly proud to support our residents—and their neighbors—across South Florida with deliveries of fresh produce. Food insecurity does not stop at property lines, and neither will our work.”
The boxes—containing sweet corn, squash, cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes, and onions—were sourced locally, both providing a crucial boost to local businesses and staple produce items to vulnerable communities at a time when the COVID-19 pandemic has left millions out of work.
“We placed an emphasis on sourcing local produce to maximize our impact as our residents received deliveries at their doors,” said Lincoln Avenue Partner Yoni Gruskin.
Lincoln Avenue Capital donated an additional 1,620 boxes of produce in May to residents at eight of its Orlando-area properties.
As a family-owned, values-driven organization, Lincoln Avenue Capital felt it had a special responsibility to the community that it calls home—Los Angeles.
Lincoln Avenue Capital donated office furniture—including conference room tables, desks and chairs—and computer monitors to several Los Angeles nonprofits last month. The furniture and supplies come from Lincoln Avenue Capital’s current office, as the organization prepares to move offices to another Los Angeles location.
The supplies went to organizations that provide critical social services to communities, including Para Los Niños, Bet Tzedek, Asian Americans Advancing Justice, Alliance for Children’s Rights, The People Concern, and Inner City Law Center.
“We are grateful for the generous furniture donation from Lincoln Avenue Capital. This in-kind gift came at the perfect time as we are looking to refurnish our office space,” said Donna Miller, Director of Operations at The People Concern. “We continue to be impressed by the many ways our community is coming together during this difficult time and supporting The People Concern’s work to ensure that our most vulnerable neighbors—people experiencing homelessness and survivors of domestic violence—are housed, healthy, and safe.”
Speaking about the donations to nonprofit organizations in its community, Eli Bronfman said, “we are committed to doing our part to support organizations in Los Angeles that are meeting critical needs in our city.”