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San Diego Promise Zone

San Diego Promise Zone map

The San Diego Promise Zone, on June 6, 2016, became one of 22 federally designated Promise Zones in the United States and one of only four in California. The San Diego Promise Zone (SDPZ) covers a 6.4-square-mile targeted area that spans East Village and Barrio Logan east to Encanto and is home to the City’s most disadvantaged and underserved communities.

More than 80,000 San Diegans live in SDPZ. Unemployment is high (15.61 percent), and poverty is concentrated (39.06 percent). The area struggles with low educational attainment, insufficient access to healthcare and healthy foods, rising crime rates and the least affordable housing in the country.

Through the PDF icon Promise Zone initiative, federal government partners work with local leaders to streamline resources across agencies and deliver comprehensive support. Leading the effort, the City has partnered with numerous local organizations and agencies to develop programs and initiatives in six Working Group goal areas to improve quality of life and accelerate revitalization in the SDPZ.

The Promise Zone designation lasts for 10 years. The goals can be reviewed in thePDF icon SDPZ Ten Year Strategic Plan

For more information about the SDPZ, contact us:

  • Sean Karafin, Neighborhood Investment Manager, City of San Diego Economic Development Department, 619-236-6493
  • Alex Southard, SDPZ Coordinator, City of San Diego Economic Development Department, 619-236-6302
  • Connor Lareau, AmeriCorps VISTA, City of San Diego Economic Development Department, 619-236-6418
  • Kelsey Baird, AmeriCorps VISTA, City of San Diego Economic Development Department, 619-235-5801 

Funding Opportunities for Promise Zone Partners

Updated 04/07/2020

The San Diego Promise Zone is seeking creative and enthusiastic AmeriCorps VISTA members!


AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) members bring passion and perseverance where the need is greatest: to organizations that help eradicate poverty. AmeriCorps VISTA members serve as a catalyst for change, living and working alongside community members to meet our nation’s most pressing challenges and advance local solutions. The AmeriCorps VISTA assignments are for a term of one year beginning in June 2020. Participants must be at least 18 years of age, eligible to work in the U.S., and will receive a bi-weekly living allowance of $829.36, relocation allowance, end-of-service stipend or education award, health coverage, training, and childcare assistance if eligible. More information about AmeriCorps VISTA service is available at https://my.americorps.gov/mp/login.do

We are seeking VISTA members to fill the role of:


  • Professional Development Training
  • Non-Competitive Eligibility (NCE): AmeriCorps VISTA is the only AmeriCorps program where you can earn federal non-competitive eligibility, giving you an edge in the federal hiring process.
  • End of Service Award: Choose between a Segal Education Award (valued at approximately $6,000) to pay for a range of education expenses or a $1,800 cash stipend.

Applications must be received through the AmeriCorps portal. 

Have questions? Email Alex Southard, SDPZ Coordinator at [email protected].

Do you know someone who might be intersted? Downloand and distribute these PDF's to your network (PDF icon SDPZ Communications Associate and PDF icon SDPZ Community Outreach Associate).

San Diego Promise Zone Strategic Plan (PDF icon Download)





































San Diego Promise Zone Working Groups

Get It Done App PowerPoint Presentations

Get Involved

  • Attend a Working Group Meeting. Working Group Meetings are held monthly. Check out the Promise Zone Events Calendar for the meeting schedule and meeting notes.
  • Sign up for our monthly newsletter to stay up-to-date on SDPZ news and community events.

Community Survey Results

Measuring Success

To measure and track progress, Working Groups have developed a series of San Diego Promise Zone Data Indicators available here.

Review last year's achievements in the 2018 PDF icon SDPZ Annual Report.

Learn more


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