East Bay Permanent Real Estate Cooperative
A Cooperative Solution to the Housing Crisis
with Noni Session of EBPREC
Wednesday, May 23, 2018
North Berkeley (RSVP for location)
6:45pm-7:30pm - Casual Potluck
7:30pm-9:30pm - Program
“Landless communities are disempowered communities,” says Oakland Native and East Bay Permanent Real Estate Cooperative (EBPREC) Communications Director, Noni Session.
Noni believes that this cooperative model’s importance lies in its ability to activate and organize those most systematically disempowered during the current economic boom in Oakland and the East Bay. “We seek to rebuild collective wealth in communities of color. Our vision is to heal fractured communities by reweaving a collective relationship to the land beneath our feet.”
We know about gentrification, the housing crisis, and our community members being forced out of neighborhoods they have lived in and sustained for generations. What most of us don’t know is that there are solutions that work and their roots are growing right under our feet.
Join us and learn about one of these leading-edge organizations, the East Bay Permanent Real Estate Cooperative (EBPREC)!
We are delighted to welcome EBPREC Communications Director, Noni Session, to share with us the ins and outs of this innovative cooperative model and ways community members can get involved. Noni will be joined by Shira Shaham (EBPREC Lead for Finances & Acquisitions) and Greg Jackson (Sustainable Economies Law Center Legal Fellow and EBPREC collaborator) in the discussion and Q & A.
About East Bay Permanent Real Estate Cooperative (EBPREC)
EBPREC is the pilot of a new cooperative real estate model of land acquisition that organizes underserved communities to collectively acquire and decommodify land and housing in Oakland and the East Bay. In addition to decommodifying high priced Bay Area properties, the group has set its sights on rethinking creditworthiness by way of a unique approach to community investment. The Community receives a modest return (1-3% ROI) and neighbors are housed affordably on a mixed-use multi-unit properties owned and stewarded by the cooperative itself. Resident owners are trained by the cooperative to collectively govern themselves, resulting in not only wealth building, but skills building.
It is not only about housing, but about home. It’s about building leadership and community power, and creating wealth outside of the market for generations to come. This People Of Color (POC)-centered initiative seeks to make land and housing more accessible to community members, especially those that have been historically disenfranchised in the face of rampant speculation and rising real estate prices.
As EBPREC’s Outreach, Media & Communications Director, Noni Session identifies and implements bold strategies for building community based power through education, outreach and engagement. She manages EBPREC’s community campaigns using dynamic and multi-disciplinary approaches creating visionary solutions and strong, diverse volunteer networks.
Noni Session is a Native Oaklander, Assistant Librarian and Cultural Anthropologist. Her research and organizing work spans national and global arenas. She carried out her doctoral work under the umbrella of the UNDP in Nairobi, Kenya, where she gained on the ground experience in post-colonial leadership strategies that work. After a successful run for Oakland City Council in 2016 she realized that the development of an independent cooperative economy was her community’s best solution to rapid displacement and conditions of growing economic injustice. She holds a B.A. in Cultural Anthropology and Black Studies from San Francisco State University, and an M.A. in Cultural Anthropology from Cornell University.