Since 1984, the Low Income Investment Fund (LIIF) has been a steward for capital invested in housing, early care and education, schools, and other community-building initiatives. While LIIF provides grants and capacity building to child care small business owners, the organization does not focus on small business lending.
When Congress created the PPP loan in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, LIIF grantees began requesting more information about applying. Many had already reached out to their primary banks only to be placed in a queue. Knowing that CRF had a relationship with LIIF dating back decades, the early care and education team began referring its grantees to the CRF online PPP application.
By partnering, LIIF and CRF enabled nearly 60 organizations to access more than $6.5 million in PPP financing, which resulted in the retention of 832 jobs.
The PPP partnership with CRF is a perfect fit given LIIF’s shared mission of improving access to capital for women, people of color and the underbanked. The PPP loans referred through the partnership have benefitted small business owners grappling with the pandemic, particularly those in the communities where LIIF operates.
For CRF, the LIIF partnership also strengthens its mission and extends its impact to more communities at a time when small businesses need accessible and equitable financing. Together, LIIF and CRF are strengthening the entire CDFI industry and working toward a common goal.