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December 20, 2001

Update: Recovery Funds Used to Support Nonprofits and Small Business
By Calvert Foundation

Demands for community-based financing have been met by recovery funds established by the Nonprofit Finance Fund and ACCION New York in the wake of the September 11th terrorist attacks. -- Combined, the Nonprofit Finance Fund and ACCION New York are anticipating demand for over $8 million in assistance from their constituents in New York to recover from the attacks of September 11th. These two organizations have established funds to specifically address the needs of communities that they have served for years. These funds have been put into action to help nonprofits and small-business owners that have immediate capital needs.

Established by Nonprofit Finance Fund, Community Recovery Fund* (CRF), is continuing to provide recovery assistance to organizations that were harmed by the attacks of September 11. Not surprisingly, demand for assistance is high and continuing to grow. As of last Friday, December 15, CRF had approved 25 grants totaling $2 million in response to reviewed applications totaling $4.4 million.

The Community Recovery Fund’s first grant was made on October 15, and its pipeline of requests has grown steadily since then. Currently, the Nonprofit Finance Fund is evaluating 48 additional applications for a total of $5.8 million and is receiving an average of nine new applications each week.

The 25 grantees supported by the CRF employ over 1,000 people: 407 full-timers and 658 part-timers, as well as 112 freelance teachers and artists and 300 students for summer jobs. Eleven of the 25 serve low and moderate-income populations, whose constituencies are currently bearing the brunt of an economic downturn; and eleven are arts and culture organizations and are playing a key role in bringing commerce back to New York. According to Clara Miller Executive Director of the Nonprofit Finance Fund, "Our experience is confirming our initial impression that helping these organizations recover yields great gains in helping the City as a whole recover. "

Click here for examples of beneficiaries of the Community Recovery Fund.

Working directly the organizations in New York, the Nonprofit Finance Fund sees no immediate end to the demand for assistance but rather the likelihood of an increase, as organizations get a better sense of the nature and scope of their business losses.

Recently, the Kresge Foundation's board had voted approval of $2 million for the CRF, joining The Ford Foundation and the September 11th Fund and bringing its total to $5 million. Net of awards made, this leaves about $3 million with which to fund the $5.8 million now in the pipeline. At this rate of dibursement these funds could be fully depleted shortly after the beginning of the year.

The Community Recovery Fund is seeking additional contributions, access to funds for applicants and partners who may want to use our process of assessment to make their own direct awards.

Click here to donate to the Community Recovery Fund.

As New York City's largest microlender, ACCION New York has established the American Dream Disaster Relief Fund to provide immediate relief to existing ACCION New York clients as well as other small business owners in New York City affected by the attack on the World Trade Center. ACCION believes that the demand for loans through the American Dream Fund will exceed $2.5 million. ACCION New York has already raised over $680,000 towards the fund and has received a separate donation to fully cover its operating costs associated with this initiative.

Click to read about Jason, Ok Koo Yeo and Abdullah , three people that have been helped by the American Dream Fund.

* Calvert Foundation, in cooperation with NFF, will monitor and report the activities of the Community Recovery Fund to its donors over the coming months and years. The Community Recovery Fund is also known as the Nonprofit Recovery Fund.

© Calvert Foundation

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