Community Development Banks make a difference in the lives of tens of thousands of people across the country. CDBA members deliver sustainable impact through innovative financial products and services for low and moderate income communities that are left out of the economic mainstream. Our members are often the only source of credit and financial services in these underserved communities.
Our banks finance a range of borrowers and projects. The credit they mobilize builds housing and supports small businesses, creating a ripple effect that extends far beyond their direct customers.
For the Shirks’ first nine years living in Chicago, they squeezed their six family members into a 2-bedroom apartment. The Shirks believed homeownership was out of their reach. But thanks to a partnership between community development organization Neighborhood Housing Services of Chicago and First Eagle Bank, their dreams of homeownership came true. First Eagle Bank is a participant in Neighborhood Housing Service’s Community Banks Initiative, which connects capital and financial support from community banks to Neighborhood Housing Services’ community development projects. Through this partnership, First Eagle Bank and Neighborhood Housing Service worked with the Shirks to secure a grant for first-time homebuyers from the Federal Home Loan Bank. This grant, combined with a purchase loan made through Neighborhood Housing Service’s lending arm, gave the Shirks the financial resources they needed to afford a home. The house they chose to buy was a vacant, single-family home on Chicago's West Side, featuring a beautiful view of the Garfield Conservatory and Garfield Park. Since moving into their new house, the Shirks have been proactive in improving their neighborhood. They have led their neighbors and worked with a number of community organizations to transform the vacant lot on the corner of their block, long overgrown with weeds and filled with trash, into a vibrant community garden. Read more about how First Eagle Bank and Neighborhood Housings Services of Chicago helped the Shirks HERE >>
Inner City Advisors (ICA), a customer of Beneficial State Bank, believes that what’s good for small businesses is good for their communities. Based in Oakland, California, ICA aims to facilitate the growth of vibrant communities with education, advising and consulting for entrepreneurs. Its partner, Fund Good Jobs, buttresses that support with tailored venture investing. Together, the organizations support an ecosystem of small businesses that improves communities by providing amenities and employment to people who face high barriers to employment.
ICA provides a range of tailored services that help small business owners succeed. Their Entrepreneurship Institute gives entrepreneurs the skills and practical know-how they need to advance their businesses. ICA also provides business advising, connecting a network of established executives and experts to small businesses for pro bono consulting. Finally, ICA’s Talent Management Initiative brings benefits back to the community. It connects entrepreneurs with talented staff, promoting employment for talented members of the community.
Odis Goodloe opened The Convenience Outlet in Wabbaseka, Arkansas on October 28, 2006. The Convenience Outlet is a small grocery store situated in a rural town of 323 residents. Mr. Goodloe envisioned starting a business that would benefit the community and not require the elderly population to travel to the nearest city to get groceries and supplies. Mr. Goodloe states, “A person can find everything he needs here at The Convenience Outlet.” The store carries items such as bread loaves, sodas, deli meats, dairy products, oil, Windex, and other house hold goods. Mr. Goodloe is a retired military veteran of 22 years and has worked for Wal-Mart for ten years. He stated it was time to do something of his own. He expresses he needs to stay busy. With the assistance of Southern Good Faith Fund’s Business Development Center, Mr. Goodloe was able to obtain a loan to add to his personal investment to start the business.
Over several years, Southern Bancorporation of Helena Arkansas has financed the development and expansion of facilities for the KIPP Delta Charter School in Helena, Arkansas. In the heart of the Mississippi Delta region, education attainment and graduation rates significantly lag the nation and perpetuate chronic poverty. The KIPP School is changing this dynamic for their students and has outperformed nearly all schools in Arkansas while serving several hundred students in the second poorest county in the state. Even though 88% of the students qualify for free or reduced price lunch, 85% of its three graduated high school classes are still enrolled in college. This achievement is even more remarkable because the Arkansas college graduation rate is less than 40%. Southern has been a partner of KIPP since it came to Helena providing facilities financings, grants, and other support. In addition to creating over 100 new jobs in a USDA-designated Persistent Poverty community, KIPP has doubled the number of children from Phillips County attending college.
Providing affordable housing and most importantly helping low-wealth families become homeowners is Greater Charlottesville Habitat for Humanity’s primary mission.
“This is a very high-cost part of the state. We realized that the traditional Habitat model was not going to work here,” said Executive Director Overton McGehee. “So we’re developing mixed-income communities so that the market-rate and mid-range units will help pay for the affordable units for low-wealth families.”
This Habitat is taking it a step further. They are buying trailer parks threatened by new development. The Charlottesville affiliate is the first Habitat in the country to try such a strategy.
Community Capital Bank of Virginia, also known as Virginia Community Capital, provided a line of credit to help Habitate gain site control and buy a 100- acre Southwood Mobile Home Park in Albemarle County.
“Right now traditional banks are not very interested in making loans secured by undeveloped land,” Overton said. “VCC was willing to do something that other banks were not willing to do.”
Without Habitat, the 361 families currently living in Southwood would be displaced. Instead, these families will continue to live there and receive much higher quality affordable housing. With a projected 600 to 800 units available, many new families will also benefit. The partnership of Greater Charlottesville Habitat for Humanity and Virginia Community Capital gives the Southwood community and Charlottesville hope for a brighter future.
“I hope VCC will help us further on this project over the years and on other projects as well,” Overton said. “I highly recommend them to other non-profits.”