Most foundations hold somewhere around 5 percent of their assets as cash. It likely just sits at a bank, waiting to be used, however, it can be put to good use by generating positive social impact for underserved communities, while it’s waiting to be used. AJL recently set up accounts with the following two institutions who will use the cash for good:

  • CNote is an impact investment platform that drives economic justice in underserved communities across America. CNote investments fund businesses owned by women and people of color along with helping to develop affordable housing and increasing the number of dollars flowing into low-income and communities of color. Since inception, CNote’s impact includes: 1) 3,000 jobs created or maintained by CNote investments, 2) 51 cents out of every dollar invested funded businesses led by people of color, 3) 35 cents out of every dollar invested funded businesses owned by women — that’s more than 8x the national average (per the Majority Report of the US Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship).
  • Native American Bank (NAB) is dedicated to being an Agent of Change, re-writing how Native Communities access banking services. It’s a one-of-kind institution built on the premise that the best way to deliver banking to the underbanked in Indian Country is to come together and create the nation’s only multi-tribally owned Bank, specializing in the needs and opportunities in Indian Country. They were founded to create Economic Sovereignty within Indian Country. NAB’s impact includes: 1) 95% of their loans are made in Indian Country, 2) nearly 90% of their commercial lending supports Tribes, Businesses and Projects in areas certified as Historically Under-Utilized Business (HUB) Zones by the SBA, and other federally designated distressed areas, and 3) in the past 5 years, NAB has made loans totaling $128 million to support $250 million in projects with native entrepreneurs, Tribes, Tribal Housing Authorities and Alaska Native Corporations. (Pulled from NAB website 6/8/2023)

When you consider that there’s a record $14 trillion in total deposits sitting in U.S. banks ; yet less than 1% of those funds are being used for social impact, the opportunity for cash-driven impact is big and AJL is excited to be doing our part. 

Click here to see a sample RFP for a search for a socially-conscious bank or financial institution from Philanthropy Colorado.