Organizational Partnership Press Conference Hosted on Clark Atlanta University Campus
Atlanta, Ga (Nov. 1, 2022) – The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta, in partnership with Wells Fargo, hosted a wealth and education press conference on the campus of Clark Atlanta University on Thursday, October 27, 2022. This global coalition of business, civic, and non-profit organizations collected a multimillion-dollar grant to provide 6,000 homeowners of color with affordable housing opportunities in Atlanta. A $7.5 million donation from Wells Fargo Wealth Opportunities Restored through Home Ownership (WORTH) initiative provided the coalition with additional resources to help people who have historically been denied access to homeownership while helping to reduce the racial wealth gap disparity.
“It is our mission at Clark Atlanta University to equip our students with the necessary tools needed for success professionally and personally,” said Dr. George T. French Jr., Clark Atlanta University President. “As a result, it is paramount that our student scholars learn financial literacy and all that it entails. Financial knowledge and homeownership go hand-in-hand. Hence, we wholeheartedly support this initiative to educate and prepare our students for prosperity.”
“Momentum has been building for housing solutions in metro Atlanta for years, and once collaborative partners were asked to put pen to paper and make a financial or in-kind commitment, our region really rose to the challenge,” said Frank Fernandez, president and CEO of the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta. “We have now turned intent into action with a clear plan, a timeline, and a transparent commitment to drive change. Transforming a $7.5 million Wells Fargo funding opportunity into more than $220 million in leverage is a proof point of our partners’ passion for housing equity throughout the region.”
Metro Atlanta consistently ranks as one of the nation’s worst regions for upward mobility despite being home to the second largest population of mortgage-ready Black households in America, in a market that can support accessible prices for homebuyers at most incomes. The racial homeownership gap between Black and white households is now the highest it has been in more than 50 years. As of 2019, only 49.9% of households of color owned their home, compared to 75.7% of their white counterparts. Black Atlantans, who make up the largest BIPOC demographic in metro Atlanta, are less than half as likely to own their home as white Atlantans. It is estimated that 92% of Black household wealth is in their homes, making homeownership a critical wealth-building strategy.
The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta has more than 70 years of deep leadership for fundraising via multiple avenues and for leveraging philanthropy to connect organizations and resources for successful programs. Additionally, its support of HouseATL as a regional collaboration toward housing equity accelerated in 2022 with enhanced commitments to drive action.
Access to affordable housing and addressing the racial wealth gap are critical tenets of the Foundation’s TogetherATL promise to create a more prosperous and equitable Atlanta for all who call it home.