Citi Foundation Expands Community Progress Makers Fund to Support U.S. Nonprofit Organizations Addressing Urban Challenges

Funds to be used across six cities to accelerate economic opportunity and address challenges ranging from unemployment to small business development to energy efficiency
Nov 1, 2017 10:00 AM ET

NEW YORK, November 1, 2017 /3BL Media/ —The Citi Foundation today announced an expansion of its Community Progress Makers Fund, through an investment of an additional $20 million in leading nonprofit organizations across six U.S. cities. The Community Progress Makers Fund provides unrestricted grant funding to nonprofit organizations working to tackle longstanding urban economic challenges for low-income households and communities – from unemployment to small business development to energy efficiency. Organizations serving Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, San Francisco Bay Area and Washington, D.C., may apply for grants up to $500,000 through the open Request for Applications. The deadline is December 18, 2017.

Launched in 2015, the Community Progress Makers Fund builds upon the Citi Foundation’s commitment to supporting local solutions and organizations that are helping build stronger, more resilient cities that catalyze economic opportunity for all their residents.

The impact of providing core operating support to community organizations has already been felt. In San Francisco, the Mission Economic Development Agency has achieved its goal of preserving and producing 1,000 affordable housing units three years ahead of schedule. In Chicago, Elevate Energy saved low-income households over $7 million through energy efficiency services, in the last two years. To date, the 40 Community Progress Maker organizations have:

  • Helped more than 14,700 low-income people secure financial assets;
  • Built over 10,500 affordable housing units;
  • Strengthened more than 1,100 small businesses; and
  • Connected 1,800 young people to jobs in their communities.

“Community Progress Makers are just getting started,” said Brandee McHale, President of the Citi Foundation. “We are proud of not only their measurable impact, but also the fresh approaches they have taken on tough issues, the new partnerships they have formed, and how they have utilized the funding flexibility to pivot their strategies. We are thrilled to build on the momentum we’ve gained over the past two years and provide more organizations with the chance to scale their impact and change the lives of people in their communities.”

“It has been so meaningful to partner with the Citi Foundation,” says Emily Gresham, Assistant Vice President for Research and Economic Development at Florida International University and cofounder of StartUP FIU FOOD, a 2016-2017 Community Progress Maker. “The operational support has been about entrusting us with the responsibility of being good stewards of grant dollars—and that’s empowering. The Citi Foundation has been flexible, understanding that progress is not always linear and providing the much needed structure to bring about the change we are seeking to create.”

“The Urban Institute’s research on effective philanthropy shows that flexible, multi-year investment – of the kind Citi Foundation is providing these local nonprofits – can be a catalyst for innovation,” said Sarah Rosen Wartell, President of the Urban Institute. “Working with the Community Progress Makers, we see that they are using the Citi Foundation support to build important capacities for data, measurement, evaluation, and ultimately greater impact.”

Along with core operating support, grantees will have access to technical assistance from leading national researchers and experts on topics such as data-driven decision-making and movement-building.  Additionally, Fund recipients will participate in convening opportunities with other grantees to share and learn best practices.

The deadline to apply is December 18, 2017 at 4:00PM EST. Informational webinars will be held on November 7, 2017, November 9, 2017, and November 16, 2017. Grant recipients will be in announced in early 2018. For more information on the Community Progress Makers Fund and to apply, please visit:

About the Citi Foundation

The Citi Foundation works to promote economic progress and improve the lives of people in low-income communities around the world. We invest in efforts that increase financial inclusion, catalyze job opportunities for youth, and reimagine approaches to building economically vibrant cities. The Citi Foundation's "More than Philanthropy" approach leverages the enormous expertise of Citi and its people to fulfill our mission and drive thought leadership and innovation. For more information, visit


Elizabeth Kelly, 212-559-2477

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