Impact investing success stories

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87 Stories found


Sankara Eye Foundation

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Summary

Sankara Eye Foundation (SEF) was founded in the Bay Area in the U.S. in 1998 by Sankara volunteers as the fund raising arm of the Sankara Eye Care Institutions (SECI). SECI was founded in 1977 in Coimbatore (in the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu) by two doctors in response to the immense need for eye care services in rural India. Focused exclusively on eye care – SECI provides comprehensive eye care services including cataract, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, corneal and refractive surgery, pediatric ophthalmology, ocular oncology – with state of the art equipment including Lasik and highly proficient doctors and medical staff. Every Sankara hospital uses 80/20 cross subsidy model where 80% rural poor patients are served for free with revenues derived from 20% of paid patients. In 2000, Sankara (together the Indian operations and the US fundraising arm) adopted Vision 20/20 by the year 2020 – a mission to eradicate curable blindness in India by establishing 20 eye hospitals all over India by the year 2020. 

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Opportunity Fund

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Summary

Opportunity Fund (OF) is an innovative microfinance fund and CDFI based in San Jose, CA.  The organization was formed in December 1993 and its mission is to enhance the economic well-being of working people by helping them earn, save, and invest in their future. Now California's leading microfinance provider, Opportunity Fund began based on the idea that small amounts of money and financial advice could help people make permanent and lasting change to improve their own lives. Since making its first loan in 1995,  Opportunity Fund has deployed $297 million into the communities they serve. organization works primarily in Santa Clara, San Mateo, San Francisco, and Alameda counties. Following the acquisition of Financiera Confianza, a for-profit microlender, in 2012, Opportunity Fund also has a presence in Los Angeles, Orange, and San Bernardino counties. 

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Access to Capital for Entrepreneurs (ACE)

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Summary

Access to Capital for Entrepreneurs is a nonprofit community lender whose mission is to help entrepreneurs launch, grow, and strengthen their businesses. ACE assists established companies, as well as start-ups, to help them achieve sustainability. ACE was started in 1999 by CEO Grace Fricks as a response to the lack of available start-up capital for North Georgia Technical College graduates wanting to start businesses. Presently, ACE serves 68 counties, including all of North Georgia and the Atlanta metro area.

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SUN Initiative Financing, LLC

Summary

The nonprofit CDFI, Boston Community Capital, makes loans to affordable housing developers, community development corporations, charter schools, Head Start Programs, local health care, and day care centers around the country. In response to the growing foreclosure crisis, Boston Community Capital started the SUN Initiative in 2009 to help families in the greater Boston area avoid foreclosure. SUN works with banks and attorneys to stop the eviction process, purchase foreclosed properties at current market values, and resell those properties to their current occupants at a significant discount off the prior mortgage value. Through this process, SUN provides foreclosed homeowners with a new 30-year, fixed rate mortgage and sets up a bi-weekly payment plan, helping homeowners build up the reserves to pay down the mortgage principal and reduce the length of the loan or to pay for necessary home repairs. By helping families avoid relocation and keep their homes, the SUN Initiative hopes to both stabilize neighborhoods and support communities.

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FINCA Microfinance Fund

Summary

In 2009, Deutsche Bank closed the US $21.2 million FINCA Microfinance Fund. The fund, which was the first microfinance debt fund to close after the 2008 worldwide economic crisis and the first microfinance fund to be entirely composed of private sector investments, includes institutional investors and venture philanthropists, some of whom are investing in microfinance for the first time. Since its creation, the Fund has provided subordinated loans to 7 microfinance institutions affiliated with FINCA International. These loans supply the 7 MFIs with a stable source of capital in order to help them attract additional senior funding and expand their lending.

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ExED

Summary

Founded in 2008, ExED is a nonprofit organization that works to improve K-12 public education in lower income communities of Southern California through the growth and success of charter schools. ExED serves as a key resource for charter schools to overcome one of the most challenging obstacles they face: finding and financing the construction of facilities where students can thrive. In particular, ExED has pioneered new funding sources for facility financing and continues to be a leader in ensuring that charter school students have access to great facilities. ExED also provides business management and consulting services to help emerging charter school clients craft charter petitions, while providing technical, human resources, and accounting assistance to charter schools already in existence. As the full-service “CFO” for each school, ExED creates efficiencies and sound business practices that direct more resources to the classroom. With more than 12 years of experience serving more than 100 charter schools, ExED draws on extensive relationships with civic leaders, financial institutions, school districts and other stakeholders in the charter movement.

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Envirofit International

Summary

Established in 2003, Envirofit International is a social enterprise that develops well-engineered technology solutions to improve the human condition on a global scale, with a primary emphasis on applications in the developing world. Relying on market mechanisms to guide product development and drive consumer demand, Envirofit’s enterprise-based model represents a new, more sustainable approach to tackling global problems. Currently, Envirofit is tackling the global indoor air pollution problem as the leader in design, manufacture, and distribution of clean efficient cookstoves worldwide. Envirofit has a wealth of experience in product design, an established supply base for high quality low cost product, and a dedicated supply chain team that can deliver product anywhere in the word.

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AHC Inc.

Summary

AHC Inc. is a nonprofit developer of affordable housing in the Mid-Atlantic region that provides quality homes for low- and moderate-income families. AHC Inc.’s purpose is to produce, preserve, manage, advocate for and finance affordable rental and owner-occupied housing. As an extension of the rental housing program, AHC also offers educational services to strengthen residents’ economic and social stability.

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XacBank Ltd.

Summary

XacBank is one of Mongolia’s largest banks, serving Micro customers, Small and Medium-sized Businesses, and large corporations with a range of inclusive banking, fair investment, and other financial products and services.  It operates in all 21 provinces and the capital city serving more than 500,000 customers through its 107 retail and business branches, as well as specialized banking outlets including over 400 AMAR mobile banking agents and 1,000 merchant agents. The Bank aims to create sustainable value for its customers, shareholders, and institutional investors, while promoting a triple-bottom line vision and mission as built around the “Planet, People, and Profit.”

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WORKS

Summary

Women Organizing Resources Knowledge & Services was created in 1998 by a group of women with extensive experience working in low-income communities of Los Angeles in the field of affordable housing and community development. Committed to developing strong, sustainable communities, these women combined their years of experience in pioneering pragmatic and innovative models for affordable housing and enriched social service programs in order to advance family and individual viability. Through support and stewardship, WORKS builds equitable, heart-based, sustainable communities and encourages resident self-determination. WORKS envisions community in a way that honors our collective cultures.

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Voxiva, Inc.

Summary

Founded in 2001, Voxiva is a global pioneer in delivering interactive mobile health services. Voxiva leverages the world's 5 billion mobile phones to communicate and interact with people to help them live healthier lives. All of Voxiva's patient engagement services incorporate social marketing approaches and evidenced-based best practices to deliver highly effective and engaging solutions. These services combine multiple technologies - SMS text messaging, interactive voice, email, mobile apps, devices, and the web - to support prevention and wellness, disease management, adherence, and more. Voxiva's programs support a broad range of health topics such as maternal & child health, smoking cessation, and diabetes self-management.

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VisionFund International

Summary

VisionFund International improves the lives of children in the developing world by offering small loans and other financial services to families living in poverty. VisionFund's work empowers its clients to grow successful businesses which enable children to grow up with improved health and education. Currently, VisionFund's products include microloans, micro-savings accounts, and micro-insurance and are offered through a network of microfinance institutions in developing countries around the world. Working in partnership with World Vision, a Christian relief, development, and advocacy organization, VisionFund is committed to long-term change which will unlock potential for future generations.

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The Reinvestment Fund

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Summary

The Reinvestment Fund (TRF) is a national leader in rebuilding America’s distressed towns and cities, through the innovative use of capital and information. A nonprofit and a Community Development Financial Institution, TRF has invested $1.3 billion in Mid-Atlantic communities since its inception in 1985. TRF works closely with a diverse network of investors and business partners to galvanize private initiative and capital for the public good. Together, we are investing in homes, schools, healthcare, fresh food access and a sustainable energy future – paving the way for stronger, more vibrant communities and a region full of opportunity and growth. TRF also provides public policy expertise by helping clients create actionable solutions and by sharing data and analysis via www.PolicyMap.com.

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The Paradigm Project

Summary

The Paradigm Project is a social venture company working to create sustainable social, economic, and environmental value within developing world communities by providing products, services, and opportunities that reduce poverty and improve quality of life. To do this, Paradigm collaborates with local businesses, entrepreneurs, and global non-profits to build and manage scalable energy-related businesses that meet immediate development needs. Projects are designed to create immediate impact in communities and to generate the highest quality carbon offsets, which are then sold in the carbon markets. The resulting revenues are used to fuel project growth, repay investors, and build long-term value for NGO partners and participating communities. Paradigm's mission is to develop world-class, impact ventures that generate meaningful value for at least 5 million families (25 million people) in the developing world by 2020, and 20 million families (over 100 million people) by 2030.

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Entrepreneur Fund

Summary

Since 1989, the mission of the Entrepreneur Fund has been to promote entrepreneurial spirit and create economic wealth and diversity in northeastern Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin. The Entrepreneur Fund believes in the potential of skilled entrepreneurs to build strong local businesses that create jobs and healthy, sustainable communities, and therefore, the Fund seeks to help people start and grow successful, locally-owned small businesses. By providing entrepreneurial training, support, and financing to emerging and small businesses, the Entrepreneur Fund hopes to help each of their entrepreneur clients build a stronger business. In addition to being a certified CDFI, the Entrepreneur Fund is also designated as an SBA Microlender, an SBA Women's Business Center, and a non-bank SBA 7a lender.

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Thaneakea Phum (Cambodia), Ltd.

Summary

Thaneakea Phum (Cambodia), Ltd. is a rapidly growing, regulated microfinance institution with a focus on serving low-income families in rural Cambodia. TPC's mission is to provide entrepreneurs and families at the base of socio-economic pyramid with the economic opportunities to transform the quality of their lives and their communities through the provision of effective and sustainable client empowering financial services. TPC is currently the 5th largest MFI in Cambodia, measured by number of borrowers. Due to its commitment to responsibly serving clients, focus on customer service, innovative products, and fair and transparent pricing, TPC has become a trusted provider of financial services for rural Cambodians.

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Southern Bancorp Community Partners

Summary

Southern Bancorp Community Partners is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and certified CDFI with a mission to transform rural Southern communities by creating new educational and economic opportunities for people with limited resources. SBCP works in partnership with Southern Bancorp Inc., one of the country’s largest rural development banks, to revitalize struggling rural areas. By combining the vision, passion, and creativity of non-profit organizations with the stability and permanence of a private bank, Southern is able to access both the grassroots individuals most affected by regional change as well as the community leadership base of professional, civic, and governmental institutions that traditional non-profit organizations are unable to reach. Southern's goal is to organize all of the above groups in transforming rural economies by creating new trends of investment in people, jobs, businesses, and property. Southern measures its impact through three transformation goals: reducing poverty, increasing employment, and increasing educational attainment in its focus communities.

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Shared Interest

Summary

Shared Interest works as a catalyst for social and economic change in South Africa. Since its inception in 1994, Shared Interest has used loan guarantees to bridge the gap between South African banks and marginalized people, previously considered "unbankable" during apartheid. As a 501(c)(3) non-profit social investment fund, Shared Interest raises capital in the U.S. from individuals, foundations, and financial institutions to support micro-lending, agricultural cooperatives, and small businesses in South Africa. Along with our South African partner, Thembani International Guarantee Fund, we have helped make the promise of economic human rights a reality for over 2 million South Africans.

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Self-Help Enterprises

Summary

Formed in 1965, Self-Help Enterprises is a nonprofit organization dedicated to self-help housing, sewer and water development, housing rehabilitation, multifamily housing, and homebuyer programs in the San Joaquin Valley of California. The goal of SHE is to help farm laborers and other low-income families to help themselves. This concept of "self-help" is based upon the conviction that, given the proper tools, individuals can and will do the work necessary to improve their living conditions. SHE's role is ideally limited to providing technical services and support, helping families and communities compete for scarce financial resources and empowering people to be leaders. With this conviction, SHE follows its mission to improve the lives of low-income residents in the San Joaquin Valley through housing and related programs and services.

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TruFund Financial Services, Inc.

Summary

TruFund Financial Services, Inc. is a wholly independent national non-profit Community Development Financial Institution with more than $55 million assets under management. Operating primarily in 3 markets, New York, Louisiana, and Alabama, TruFund is a hands-on, not-for-profit lender committed to growing underserved small businesses and helping their communities prosper. TruFund's mission is to stimulate economic development in underserved communities by providing innovative financial solutions and hands-on technical assistance to small businesses and not-for-profit organizations. TruFund develops lending platforms and educational resources for small businesses and not-for-profit organizations that have difficulty accessing capital from traditional sources. Together with public, private, and community partners, TruFund fosters the long-term vitality of small businesses and the communities around them. TruFund offers more than a loan – it provides an opportunity for underserved small businesses and low-income communities to thrive.

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Phone: 800.248.0337  |  Fax: 301.280.6060  info@calvertfoundation.org