July 28, 2022

Groundbreaking Ceremony for 53-Unit Bethel Manor Apartments

July 28th Groundbreaking Ceremony to Celebrate Innovative Partnership between SDS Supportive Housing Fund, RMG Housing and Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church, Los Angeles

Private capital investment & resident support services to provide quality Permanent Supportive Housing

Los Angeles, CA – July 28, 2022 –  Members of the clergy and congregation of Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church (Bethel A.M.E) will join SDS Capital Group’s Founder & CEO Deborah La Franchi, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Los Angeles District 8 City Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson, Congressmember Karen Bass, CEO of RMG Housing Tim Roth, Managing Partner of LOGOS Faith Development LLC Pastor Martin C. Porter, and Executive Director of Homeless Health Care Los Angeles (HHCLA) Mark Casanova, for the groundbreaking ceremony of Bethel Manor Apartments, a 53-unit permanent supportive housing (PSH) project to be built using $11.3M in private-sector funding from the SDS Supportive Housing Fund. 

The $150M SDS Supportive Housing Fund (SHF or Fund) is a new high-speed, low-cost financing model developed by SDS Capital Group to fund RMG Housing’s PSH developments that support people experiencing homelessness. The model uses zero taxpayer dollars for land acquisition or construction. The Bethel Manor Apartments site located at 7924 Western Ave. in South Los Angeles is adjacent to Bethel A.M.E and is being ground leased from the Church in a unique partnership that generates revenue for Bethel A.M.E while furthering their mission of serving community members in need. 

Bishop Clement W. Fugh, presiding prelate, 5th Episcopal District of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, a district that encompasses over 350 churches in 15 states, has been an ardent supporter of this first-of-its-kind collaboration between the Church and a private equity fund. 

“Bethel A.M.E Church of Los Angeles, CA, has taken its name and its mission to heart,” said Bishop Fugh. “In scripture Bethel is interpreted to mean, House of God, The Tabernacle of the Most High. Bethel has embraced as its mission ministry to the whole person – spirit, body, and soul. In addition to inviting persons to worship in its sanctuary and providing meals through its Community Development Program for those who are challenged with food insecurities, today we add shelter – safe, affordable, decent housing.”

The Bethel Manor Apartments collaboration serves as a model for churches to leverage the land and property they own to receive income while meeting the needs of unhoused community members. The private capital funding model allows for quicker closes and for new construction to be developed at significantly lower costs than most other PSH developments. 

“We are proud to be the financial partner supporting the construction of this project with Bethel A.M.E,” said Deborah La Franchi, Founder & CEO, SDS Capital Group. “This is SHF’s seventh investment in Los Angeles and our fourth partnership with a local church organization. We currently have eight projects with 438 PSH units under various phases of development– seven are located in Los Angeles. And, we anticipate reaching approximately 850 units by year end. This new partnership between the SDS Fund, RMG Housing and Bethel will provide accessible permanent supportive housing here in Los Angeles for our neighbors who are living on the streets.” 

Others scheduled to participate in the Bethel Manor Apartments groundbreaking ceremony are Reverend Dr. Kelvin T. Calloway, Senior, the longest tenured Pastor of Bethel A.M.E Church, Los Angeles (13 years), Mark Casanova, Executive Director, Homeless Health Care Los Angeles (HHCLA), Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Los Angeles District 8 City Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson, Congressmember Karen Bass, and Pastor Martin C. Porter, Managing Partner, LOGOS Faith Development, a real estate firm specializing in re-purposing underutilized land. Pastor Porter has worked closely with project developer RMG Housing and SDS Capital Group’s Supportive Housing Fund team. Members of Bethel A.M.E Choir and the Young People’s Division of the African Methodist Episcopal Church will welcome guests. 

Bethel A.M.E Church is looking forward to working with the SDS Supportive Housing Fund, RMG, LOGOS Development, and our allies and partners in the greater community who have stood with us throughout this entire process, to serve our unhoused neighbors, transforming the church’s parking lot into crucially needed housing is aligned with our mission.

– Reverend Dr. Kelvin T. Calloway, Senior. Pastor of Bethel A.M.E Church

Bethel Manor Apartments is the most recent SHF project to break ground for construction.  The project site will be transformed from a current parking lot into 52 one-bedroom apartments and a single two-bedroom unit in South Los Angeles. Each unit will contain a private bathroom and kitchen.

“The partnership between Bethel A.M.E., SDS Capital Group, and RMG Housing serves as a financial and development blueprint to expedite the building of affordable housing,” said Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson. “It also serves as a moral blueprint. We need everyone at the table to come up with solutions to this humanitarian crisis and I am happy to see our partners are showing up in great force.”

The SDS Supportive Housing Fund is the sole source of capital for PSH projects developed by RMG Housing, providing a streamlined and quick funding turnaround that allows a project to break ground much sooner than what is typical within the industry. PSH developments usually need an average of seven funding sources which can take developers years to aggregate. The Fund’s “one-stop” model significantly reduces underwriting and closing time for typical PSH projects from an average of 5-7 years to approximately 24 months from initial underwriting to tenant move-in.   

Another key SHF point of distinction is a focus on investing exclusively in projects that are financially sustainable over the long term. This requires that the Fund’s individual cost per PSH unit in the Los Angeles area must be below $250,000—as compared to the $600,000 average in the current California market.[1] For example, the average underwritten cost for all eight projects funded to date is $205,000, for land, construction and all hard and soft costs.  Financing issues and per-unit costs are often cited as the foremost obstacles to developing much-needed housing for the Los Angeles County unhoused population, which currently exceeds 66,000.[2]

“Bethel Manor Apartments is the result of an innovative partnership between the SDS Supportive Housing Fund, RMG and Bethel A.M.E. Church that makes good use of underutilized property to the benefit of the community,” said Tim Roth, CEO of RMG Housing. “We’re excited to be working with Bethel A.M.E., a partner committed to helping individuals experiencing homelessness in Los Angeles.” 

A crucial element of the project is the case management services that will be provided to each tenant. Homeless Health Care Los Angeles (HHCLA) will be the service provider at Bethel Manor Apartments providing wraparound supportive services and case management for apartment residents.

“We are pleased to be part of this collaborative effort that is bringing much-needed permanent supportive housing for people experiencing homelessness. HHCLA will provide onsite intensive case management services for residents. Our partnership with RMG, SDS and Bethel A.M.E. Church is directly addressing one of LA’s most pressing concerns,”

Mark Casanova, Executive Director of HHCLA

In addition to the Church, the nonprofit Decro Group will serve as a service partner undertaking a range of PSH administrative activities that support the project. 

The SDS Supportive Housing Fund is on track to finance 30 projects for a total of 1,800 units of permanent supportive housing, mostly in the Los Angeles area. The Fund has financed eight PSH projects to date (seven in Los Angeles and one in the Bay Area) for a combined total of 438 units of PSH. 

The 7924 Western project location is equidistant from downtown Los Angeles and Los Angeles International Airport along a public transportation corridor that allows for greater access to area employers. Building amenities will include a recreational room, roof decks, a courtyard, a laundry facility and a bike storage room. Construction is projected to commence August 2022 and conclude August 2024. 


[1] https://lacontroller.org/audits-and-reports/problems-and-progress-of-prop-hhh/

[2] https://www.lahsa.org/news?article=726-2020-greater-los-angeles-homeless-count-results&ref=hc


About SDS Capital Group and the SDS Supportive Housing Fund

Los Angeles-based SDS Capital Group serves as manager of the SDS Supportive Housing Fund. Founded in 2001 by Deborah La Franchi, SDS Capital Group manages a platform of impact investment funds – each with a distinct geography and investment strategy. SDS has been recognized for the past five years by ‘ImpactAssets 50’ as one of the top impact managers globally. With six funds and finance products on its platform, SDS currently manages over $1 billion in impact assets. The SDS Supportive Housing Fund is the company’s newest fund. It focuses solely on financing permanent supportive housing (PSH) developments in California that are financially sustainable and provide case management support services. Investors in the Fund include: Kaiser Permanente, Ally Bank, Synchrony Bank, Pacific Premiere Bank, East West Bank, Charles Schwab Bank, CIT Bank, the Weingart Foundation, First Republic Bank, Western Alliance Bank, Hudson Pacific Properties, California Community Foundation, and the Annenberg Foundation.
For more information on the SDS Supportive Housing Fund, click here or contact us.


About RMG Housing

RMG Housing, based in Los Angeles, is a developer of permanent supportive housing (PSH) for individuals and families experiencing homelessness. Each property RMG develops offers on-site intensive case management services for residents. RMG’s core mission is to develop high-quality PSH units that are both cost-effective and financially sustainable.
For more information, visit www.rmghousing.com


About Bethel A.M.E

Bethel A.M.E Church met for the first time as an organized Mission of the African Methodist Episcopal Connection in 1921 and has been a mainstay in the South Los Angeles community for 101 years. Under the leadership of Reverend Dr. Kelvin T. Calloway, Bethel is proud to continue of legacy of community outreach with a focus on the least, lost and left out. For more information, visit bethelamela.com 


About Logos Faith Development LLC: 

LOGOS is a full-service real estate firm, specialized in re-purposing underutilized land to build vibrant, equitable communities. Founded in 2017, LOGOS partners with property owners to transform their land into assets that better serve them and the local neighborhood. Our team works closely with builders, funders, and other strategic partners to provide dignified housing and bring much needed services to historically under-served areas. To learn more about LOGOS, please visit: www.logosfaithdevelopment.com or email: mcp@logosfaithdev.com


CONTACT & MORE INFO:

Contact Sybil MacDonald,
Marketing & Communications
sybil@marketing-comm.com
Tel: 323.376.8961


MEDIA RESOURCES & DOWNLOADS:

Project Photos, Click Here

Additional SDS Press Info, Click Here

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