CICD works to improve the economic, social and physical well-being of Boston’s communities of color–with a special focus on Mattapan and its Caribbean residents ––primarily through ensuring access to safe, affordable housing.
Greater Boston now has one of the most expensive housing markets in the country, a challenge that disproportionately impacts black and brown residents–many of whom comprise Boston’s essential workforce. More than 50% of Black and Latino residents are considered “housing cost burdened”, meaning they spend more than 30% of their household income on housing and 25% are severely cost burdened. These residents are also far less likely to own homes in Greater Boston and are faced with eviction proceedings at far higher rates.
We know that access to housing that is safe, clean and affordable can have a ripple effect, broadening access to economic opportunity, improving health and well-being and helping children reach their full potential. CICD leverages real estate development in struggling communities such as Mattapan, where Caribbean immigrants comprise two-thirds of the population and approximately 23% live below the poverty line. We work with government agencies, real estate developers and other partners to create properties that are environmentally conscious, ethically financed and built with the health and well-being of residents as the first priority. We further contribute to the economic prosperity of the neighborhoods in which we work by working with local businesses and hiring neighborhood residents on our job sites.
Our goal is to transform housing into homes and neighborhoods into communities–and to ensure that the working families that are essential to Boston’s economy and wellbeing have a place to call home. To create and maintain strong, stable communities, we teach tenants to understand their rights and work with them to improve their financial literacy skills. Together with our partners, we provide community programming and resources in the areas of healthcare, employment, personal finance, legal assistance and more, removing the language and technology barriers that often prevent immigrant families from accessing vital services.