Transformational Investing in Communities of Color

Feb 7, 2022 10:10 AM ET

Transformational Investing in Communities of Color

by Mary Bruce Alford, Senior Vice President of Investor Relations at Hope Credit Union 

After spending a decade working nationally to advance social and environmental justice through land conservation, I was looking for a way to continue purpose driven work while also establishing roots within the community where I was living. There was no turning back after I discovered CDFIs.

For those looking to invest in a solidarity economy, Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) offer a proven way to achieve the instant gratification of knowing one’s investment will immediately make a positive impact on someone’s life and contribute to a long-term shift in who participates in our nation’s economy. Attuned to the greatest needs of underrepresented communities, investments in CDFIs represent an opportunity to place one’s money where it has meaning, to generate a return on relationships and to join a movement of some of the most influential corporations in the world.

Invest in a Place Where Your Money has Meaning

Nowhere do dollars invested make a greater difference than those invested in CDFIs led by and located in communities of color. HOPE, a Black and Women Owned CDFI Credit Union, has helped generate $3 billion in financing that has benefited nearly 2 million people across the most economically distressed areas of the Deep South. Far too often, communities of color are overlooked and underserved by the banking sector. As a result, these capital starved communities simply do not have the wealth traditional banks require to qualify for and meet the demand for small business or mortgage loans. 

Read Mary's full article and watch the Banking on Us series all here