Create lasting economic impact

CRF designs innovative, community-centric financing solutions that drive exponentially greater and more sustainable impact. We work side-by-side with community stakeholders and partner organizations to create a more fair, responsive and accessible community finance ecosystem.
In an effort to create persistent change, CRF brings together civic leaders, financial institutions, foundations and other community stakeholders to create new strategies that build stronger local economies, create jobs and support upward economic mobility.
We work to coordinate and improve awareness of capital and resources in communities while growing the capacity and capabilities of local lenders and support organizations.
Mother and daughter buying soy sauce in a supermarket

Empowering Communities, Strengthening Local Economies

Community-Centric Approach

We listen and work with the community to understand the need.

Ecosystem Improvement

We work with the community to create a more sustainable community development ecosystem with a focus on small business and single-family housing.

Long-Term Transformation

We develop and implement cutting-edge strategies and productive partnerships that create the scale and efficiency needed to drive more capital into the community.

Our Approach

Our deep knowledge of program design and administration gives communities that work with us advantages in realizing their goals.

Program Planning & Design

After being invited by community members, CRF and our partners listen and learn about the local economic landscape, including the key players and stakeholders, business environment, challenges and gaps in financial services.

Program Management

We work hand-in-hand with our partners to execute on community-specific plans, outlining roles and responsibilities for all players and ensuring collaboration throughout all project phases.

Program Evaluation

We’re always seeking to improve the way we work with communities. CRF evaluates each solution during and after implementation to measure success and impact, modifying the strategy as appropriate for best results.

Programs in Action

See how these efforts are creating collective impact in communities across the country.

Active programs

Program Case Studies

woman with open sign

Insights – The Southern Opportunity and Resiliency (SOAR) Fund

woman purchasing food from a vendor

Insights – California Rebuilding Fund

bridge in downtown Chicago

Insights – Chicago Small Business Resiliency Loan Fund

mother and son behind bakery counter

Insights – New York Forward Loan Fund Program

baker holding tray of baked goods

Community-Centered COVID-19 Recovery Program

woman using power tools for carpentry

Chicago Contractor Initiative: A Research Study

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