SAN DIEGO — A local church and nonprofit are taking matters into their own hands and creating affordable housing to help seniors and veterans on a church property in Logan Heights.

Pastor Harvey Vaughn of Bethel AME Church is on a mission to transform and rebuild Logan Heights. Over the years, he’s seen too many people end up on the street.

“Not just individuals, but families also being homeless on the street,” Pastor Vaughn said. “And we do know that many of the people that are on the street, unfortunately, are veterans.”

He says seniors often end up homeless as well because they have no family or money to afford housing. The pastor wanted to do something to address the lack of housing in San Diego.

Vaughn’s vision is to transform an unoccupied duplex on Imperial Avenue on church property into a 26-unit development to house seniors and veterans. Sixteen units will be for veterans, nine for seniors and one for a live-property manager.

“We’ll also have wrapped around services for the vets and seniors,” Vaughn explained.

The project called Bethel One is in partnership with nonprofit YIGBY, which stands for ‘Yes In God’s Backyard’, Doug Austin with the nonprofit says the project is funded through charitable contributions.

“That will allow us more flexibility, and perhaps a way to get it built more quickly,” Austin said.

The development will cost a little over $6 million.

Vaughn says its a way for churches and faith-based organizations to join the mission to help in the affordable housing crisis.

“I want to rebuild a community and everything I believe should start from the church,” Vaughn said. “It should come from the church and pour out. We have a mission to do more than preach the word.”

Bethel One breaks ground the next few weeks and is expected to be finished in February 2024.