The Housing Foundation received tax-exempt status in late 2004 and spent the end of 2004 and all of 2005 raising funds and articulating our programs. Major accomplishments for the Housing Foundation in 2005 were the first annual "A Taste of Santa Cruz" fundraiser in November -- which raised over $45,000 and helped bring the balance sheet over $110,000 -- and initializing the start-up of a closing cost assistance grant program, which has already helped several local families realize the dream of homeownership.

The Housing Foundation currently has funds earmarked and available for immediate distribution to aide Santa Cruz County families in becoming homeowners through our closing cost grant program. We are also building relationships with each of the local housing agencies to help better coordinate our efforts towards making more local residents into homeowners. We are developing a clearinghouse of information that will be available in multiple formats to educate local homebuyers and real estate industry professionals about each of the affordable housing opportunities available in Santa Cruz County, including the specific participation requirements and application processes for each.

Become involved in our solution to the housing issue in Santa Cruz by donating your time, expertise or financial resources. Contact Kathy Hartman, Executive Director of the Santa Cruz County Association of REALTORS® Housing Foundation, at (831) 464-2000 or [email protected] for additional information or to become involved.