Project Equity, a national leader in the movement to expand employee ownership has launched a new initiative to provide flexible capital to companies on the path to employee ownership. The Employee Ownership Catalyst Fund provides working capital and transaction financing to businesses with 25+ employees. Mission Driven Finance co-manages the fund with Project Equity.
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Investing in social change
See the latest news and updates from the Mission Driven Finance community.
Impact investing is often misunderstood. Is it a subset of investing or philanthropy? Come learn about how to incorporate impact investing into your investment strategy, and explore possible career paths in the impacting investing space.
Shoutout Socal recently checked in with our Co-founder and Chief Community Officer Lauren Grattan in its local stories series and asked her how she thinks about risk.
In a nutshell, the federal government built temporary tax incentives into the CARES Act to urge Americans to make charitable contributions in 2020 and support our neighbors. For those who are in a position to give or do impact investing, there’s no time like the present.
Hear directly from the 2020 cohort fellows— Andrew Moncada, Essence Rodriguez, Louise Jordan, Crystal Sevilla, and Benson Ochira—about their career goals and their experiences thus far changing the face and flow of finance.
San Diego-based impact investment fund manager Mission Driven Finance has deployed $1.5M in loans to San Diego County nonprofits that have been impacted by COVID-19, thanks to $5M in seed funding from The San Diego Foundation as part of the San Diego County COVID-19 Small Business & Nonprofit Loan Program.
We’re honored to share that David—along with early care and education expert Laura Kohn and community finance fellow Essence Rodriguez—has joined the 2020 cohort of the Promising Ventures Fellowship to explore using real estate and finance to improve access to quality early child care.
Meet Laura Galinson, director of community relations at Mission Driven Finance and a dedicated philanthropist. Laura has worn an impressive number of hats, from a world-traveling and award-winning Associated Press photographer to a publicist at Harper Collins. Laura explains, “Even though I’ve had very different roles, my work has always been rooted in being a connector and changemaker.”
Recently, our Co-founder and Chief Community Officer Lauren Grattan, and Freedom for Immigrants Co-founder and Co-executive Director Christina Mansfield spoke with Morgan Simon of Candide Group in Forbes.com to discuss why they launched the Freedom100 Fund—and how it’s a vital tool for investors and activists to join the fight for immigrant freedom.
As a financial services firm, we must address long-held racist beliefs in the world of finance and commit to doing better. Here’s how we are working on it.
The best anti-racism advice I’ve gotten so far is from my teammate Louise Jordan: Whatever we do, we have to stop recreating the same narrative. Unfortunately, many of the actions we White people take end up reinforcing existing power dynamics and telling the same, false story—that Black people and people of color have inherent risk and problems and that White people must “save” them from themselves.
The inaugural cohort of Community Finance Fellows—Louise Jordan, Andrew Moncada, Benson Ochira, Essence Rodriguez, Crystal Sevilla— impress and inspire us every day and it’s not fair to keep their wisdom to ourselves. So we invited them to share their thoughts on how finance can invoke true racial and economic justice. The fellows’ perspectives and lived experiences give us invaluable insight into how we can use finance as a tool for real impact.
The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted and exacerbated the effects of centuries of racist policies. If we don’t act fast, this crisis will rob our communities of vibrancy, diversity, and strength for many generations to come. The current global recognition of the deep roots of racism reinforces how critical it is to use all the tools in one’s toolbox to advance racial justice. As such, finance can and should be used as a tool for change in advancing economic and health equity in our communities. Together, we can turn the tide.
During times of crisis, it’s even more critical to uphold our values and stand up for those who are denied the right to stand up for themselves. Join our fight for immigrant rights by joining the Freedom100 Circle, a one-year commitment where members engage with Freedom for Immigrants and Mission Driven Finance to launch and grow our Freedom100 Bond Fund, while educating the public about the U.S. immigration detention system and community-based alternatives to detention.
WES Mariam Assefa Fund Spotlights Grantee Partner Mission Driven Finance & Community Finance Fellowship
WES Mariam Assefa Fund, one of the visionary supporters of the Community Finance Fellowship, highlighted Mission Driven Finance and the fellowship in this Insights post.
While sheltering-in-place during a pandemic, we welcomed five Community Finance Fellows to our team in March to begin learning in a virtual environment: Louise Jordan, a renewed San Diegan with a legal background who moved back from Virginia to join us; Andrew Moncada, a financial analyst from Florida who wants to run his own impact investment firm one day; Benson Ochira, a refugee from Uganda with a degree in business management; Essence Rodriguez, an undergrad research fellow with the U.S. Immigration Policy Center; and Crystal Sevilla, an executive assistant from San Diego with a deep interest in economics and finance. See how they are learning during a pandemic.
The COVID-19 crisis has forced small businesses and nonprofits around the world, including our Advance borrowers, to forget business as usual and respond in creative ways to best serve their community and survive—quickly. From delivering essential household goods and locally sourced food to staying connected with families by livestreaming nature walks, these businesses and organizations demonstrate the flexibility, resilience, and heart that make small businesses critical for communities to thrive.
The Way Back uses trauma-informed care in its client activities—clinical groups, education groups, mindfulness meditation, relapse prevention groups, codependency groups, anger management, emotional regulation, and individual psychotherapy. “We are training men to be better fathers, better husbands, better employees, to stay out of prison, to work, to communicate,” says The Way Back Executive Director Chris Thomas, a licensed therapist who has been sober for 25 years. “Men are an important part of family structure, and addiction is a family disease.”
We’re sharing with you—our community—the same message for small businesses and nonprofits that we provided to our active borrowers. During this challenging time, stay true to your values and support each other. None of us will come out of this unchanged. See our COVID-19 resources for small businesses and nonprofits.