December 1999

Three New Direct Community Investments Bring Total to $11.4 Million

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Through the Direct Community Investment Program, Catholic Health Initiatives recently purchased a certificate of deposit for $1 million from the Louisville Community Development Bank, Louisville, Ky. The news was announced to the community by (from left) Vicki Marchman, owner of a local child development center; Dave Armstrong, mayor of Louisville; Kim Burse, president and chief executive officer of Louisville Development Bancorp; Kevin Lofton, chief operating officer of Catholic Health Initiatives; and Kelly Downard, president and chief executive officer of Louisville Community Development Bank. The bank will use the investment to help create healthy communities and improve the quality of life in Louisville´s inner-city neighborhoods. "We were quite impressed with the bank´s objectives and the results that have been realized thus far," Lofton said. "Their community development efforts have garnered tremendous local support and are making a noticeable impact on the targeted neighborhoods."

Catholic Health Initiatives has made three more investments under the Direct Community Investment Program, bringing the funds the program has committed to community-based organizations to $11.4 million. The goal of the program is to lend a total of $32 million, or two percent of Catholic Health Initiatives’ operating investment program assets, to institutions or projects that promote access to jobs, housing, food, education or health care for low income and/or minority populations. The three organizations to receive the most recent Direct Community Investments are: The Reinvestment Fund Serves Pennsylvania and Delaware Loan amount: $2 million The Reinvestment Fund, which has a current loan pool of $68 million, is a community development financial institution that uses capital and technical services to rebuild low-income areas and create economic opportunities for residents. The fund focuses on affordable housing, community facility loans and small business lending. Through its affordable housing lending, the fund has created 3,500 housing units. Community facility loans finance equipment purchases, building renovations and lines of credit for child care centers. The Direct Community Investment Program loan will be used to support the Reinvestment Fund’s lending activities with special emphasis on projects located in South Philadelphia and Bucks County, Pa., and New Castle County, Del. Enterprise Corporation of the Delta Serves Arkansas, Mississippi and Louisiana Loan amount: $250,000 Enterprise Corporation of the Delta provides financing and technical assistance to small businesses in the Delta Region of Mississippi, Arkansas and Louisiana, one of the most economically distressed areas in the U.S. The corporation’s mission is to strengthen the economy and improve quality of life in the region by providing assistance to firms and entrepreneurs and promoting development of human and economic assets. The Direct Community Investment Program loan will be used to provide loans to small businesses in order to expand employment and business opportunities in the region. Northern California Community Loan Fund Serves Northern California Loan amount: $250,000 The primary purpose of the Northern California Community Loan Fund (NCCLF) is to revitalize low-income communities through lending and technical assistance to nonprofit organizations. NCCLF seeks to strengthen the economic base of low-income communities by lending to non-profit organizations that typically have limited access to financing from traditional lenders. Loans provided by NCCLF focus on nonprofit organizations involved in affordable housing, human services and community facilities. Due to an increase in property values, Northern California has a significant need for affordable low-income housing. In addition, NCCLF provides loans to human service agencies, such as those that assist AIDS patients. The Direct Community Investment Program loan will be used to support these lending activities to meet the economic needs of low-income communities throughout Northern California. The Social Responsibility Investment Staff Committee of Catholic Health Initiatives continues to review applications for direct community investments and invites market-based organizations to encourage applications from local programs. While special consideration is given to applicants in communities served by market-based organizations and sponsoring congregations, there is no requirement for a direct link between applicants and Catholic Health Initiatives.