Capital Campaign

Advancing Economic Opportunities for Immigrants

A History of Mutual Assistance

CAPI USA’s mission is to guide immigrants and refugees in their journey toward self-determination and social equality. Established in 1982 as the Center for Asians and Pacific Islanders to support Southeast Asian refugee resettlement following the Vietnam War, the organization changed its name to CAPI (pronounced ‘cap-ee’) in 2008 to be more inclusive of all refugee and immigrant communities. In 2017, CAPI moved its headquarters to the heart of Brooklyn Center via the purchase of a 10,600 sq. ft. building and adjacent vacant parcel intended to accommodate future community needs.

With core values rooted in equity, inclusion, and accessibility, CAPI provides direct services to 12,000+ lower-income people (95% BIPOC) annually in its Economic Empowerment, Refugee Services, and Basic Needs initiatives:

  • CAPI’s core programming seeks to meet foundational needs, increase income and wealth, and elevate voices with decision-makers to advance the social and economic position of immigrant and U.S.-born BIPOC communities.
  • CAPI’s two multi-service centers in South Minneapolis (East Lake Street Center) and Brooklyn Center (Immigrant Opportunity Center) provide integrated, accessible programming and onsite partnerships that increase culturally-appropriate services for persons of all nationalities.
  • CAPI’s Civic Engagement work engages an additional 8,000+ persons (predominantly immigrants) annually in support of public policy initiatives impacting Minnesota’s immigrant and BIPOC communities.

As an immigrant and BIPOC-led organization, CAPI mobilizes 55 FTE staff (76%+ staff of color), 12+ different sub-granted partners, 2 tenant agency partners and 200+ volunteers to advance the social and economic position of diverse constituents. CAPI’s $6.3MM annual budget is stewarded by its diverse leadership team (75% BIPOC) and governing board of directors (60% BIPOC).

Focus on Regional Sustainability

CAPI’s Immigrant Opportunity Center Expansion will respond to the rapid growth in community demand for CAPI’s services, while positioning the region to respond to current and future needs:

  • Equitable Development: According to the latest census Metropolitan Council data, Brooklyn Center has the second-highest poverty rate of all MN cities (39.5%), and 55.5% of its residents identify as BIPOC. The proposed redevelopment at 5930/5950 Brooklyn Boulevard is centrally located, transit-accessible, and within an area designated ‘economically distressed’ by the CDFI Fund.
  • Regional Resiliency: With a decades-long history of supporting immigrants and refugees, CAPI is increasingly sought by local, state, and federal agencies to support the resettlement of newly-arrived refugees. With mass displacement due to global conflict and climate crisis continuing to surge, these resettlement pressures will only escalate in coming years. CAPI’s Immigrant Opportunity Center Expansion brings needed infrastructure to support Minnesota’s current and future ability to effectively resettle newcomers seeking refuge here.

The Capital Project

CAPI USA proposes to develop a 3-story, 16,050 sq. ft. expansion to its Immigrant Opportunity Center (IOC 2.0) to create new wealth-building services on a vacant .84- acre parcel of land owned by CAPI at 5950 Brooklyn Boulevard in Brooklyn Center.

CAPI’s IOC 2.0 seeks to build wealth in BIPOC communities residing in Northwest Hennepin County. Key design features of CAPI’s expansion include spaces for (1) new entrepreneur training, technical assistance, and financial services to develop and expand BIPOC-led small businesses (including designated space for promising enterprises), (2) expanded public benefits eligibility screening and access assistance, tax assistance, financial coaching, and homebuyer services, (3) two social enterprises including a coffee shop/deli and an unattached greenhouse surrounded by community garden plots, (4) several community and training rooms, (5) work stations for 30+diverse staff including 2-3 tenant/ training partners, (6) patio, garden, and landscaping that connects the expansion to the neighborhood, and (7) an expanded parking lot.

CAPI’s 16,050 sq. ft. expansion is expected to cost $7.5 million to develop, financed by bonding, contributions, and CAPI reserves. Ground-breaking is expected to begin by 6/2025, with a 6/2026 completion date. In its first year of operation, CAPI expects to provide wealth-building services to 5,000+ residents, creating 75+ new jobs, supporting 20+ small businesses, and realizing a significant economic impact in the Brooklyn Center area. Click here for a presentation about the Capital Campaign.

Community Revitalization & Wealth-Building

The expanded Immigrant Opportunity Center will create a community hub for a wide variety of wealth-building services that include public benefits screening and access assistance, individualized and group financial education and services, volunteer income tax assistance (VITA) services, homebuyer workshops/ counseling, and entrepreneurship incubation. To do this, the project will leverage highly-aligned community partnerships that bring new resources to Brooklyn Center while promoting regional sustainability.

The 16,050 sq. ft. state-of-the-art facility expansion on vacant land in Brooklyn Center’s main commercial corridor brings needed investment, streetscape improvement, and greater sustainability via pedestrian/bike access, native landscaping, and greater energy efficiency and stormwater retention/management. It will similarly accrue the following community benefits:

  • Accommodates expanded volunteer income tax assistance (VITA) services serving 500+ BIPOC community members annually who will realize more than $1 million in state, federal, and property tax returns and $75,000 in tax preparation fee savings.
  • Creates two new social enterprises (coffee shop/deli and a greenhouse) that together create 20-30 new jobs.
  • Supports CAPI’s food distribution programming and affirms cultural traditions via the greenhouse and nearby gardening spaces.
  • Brings 75+ living wage jobs occupied by diverse staff and hundreds of career training and placement opportunities annually.

Immigrant Opportunity Center Expansion – Capital Budget