2008-2009 Grants at Work
Creating community & affordable housing
A sagacious saying of unknown origin says, “Give a man a fish; you have fed him for today. Teach a man to fish; and you have fed him for a lifetime.” This is very much the concept of the entities that pooled their extensive talents and expertise to form the Figueroa Corridor Community Land Trust. Simply put, due to a variety of economic factors, the people living in the 40-blocks surrounding Figueroa Street between downtown Los Angeles and the University of Southern California are being pushed out of homes they lived in for decades.
Lincoln Heights Tutorial Program
Ortega is the founder and longtime leader of the Lincoln Heights Tutorial Program, a grassroots organization that offers homework assistance and mentoring for local kids, kindergarten through ninth grade. He also oversees two related groups – Youth United for Community Action and the Junior Youth Club -- that provide leadership development and community service opportunities for junior and high school students. In all, Ortega's nonprofit group serves over 500 youth, primarily from Latino and Asian families.