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Minnesota philanthropy innovates again: why not invest at home and encourage other foundations and investors to do the same? The foundations who joined together to create the Minnesota Impact Investing Initiative are inspiring others to invest in a competitive financial return and positive social impact across 18 counties.

Impact Stories

Owning a home has long been a pillar of the American dream. But would-be homeowners in low-and moderate-income communities are overlooked by the banking industry, even with good credit. RBC GAM's impact investing strategies help low- and moderate-income home buyers access mortgages at prime rates and open the door to their own home.

Affordable mortgages for low-to-moderate income families provide stability, and are a major vehicle for building wealth and economic opportunity.

Across America, rental housing stock is severely limited and often overpriced. 80% of low-income households pay more than 1/3 of their income for rent, leaving less for food, healthcare and education. RBC GAM's impact investing strategies finance affordable rental units, buying first mortgages of multifamily rental units, helping to support renters with income limits, who are further supported by federal, state and housing authority assistance programs.

Would-be small business owners often lack the capital to open businesses that serve the community, like laundry facilities, supermarkets and clinics. RBC GAM's impact investing strategies buy the guaranteed portions of SBA loans to deliver more services to the residents of low- and moderate-income communities and provide more job opportunities within the local economy.

Access to quality education is a key driver of upward socioeconomic mobility and helps to reduce inequalities often found in higher education and the job force. RBC GAM’s impact investing strategies support equal access to educational opportunities, including preschools and primary schools, secondary and post-secondary education, as well as access to job skills and training programs. These opportunities are vital to students of all ages as they provide preparation for employment and career development.

Lack of access to comprehensive, quality healthcare services impacts the ability of men, women, and children to lead healthy and productive lives. RBC GAM’s impact investing strategies invest in a range of healthcare facilities in underserved communities – including nursing homes, community clinics, skilled nursing care and family dentistry- resulting in healthier, more stable and more productive communities.

Climate change is a global challenge that will have impacts on economies, markets, and societies worldwide. RBC GAM's impact investing strategies support projects that promote the health of the environment, including renewable energy, clean air and water, land preservation, efficient resource use, and environmental remediation.

Public buildings and spaces that provide services, activities and supports to communities are an important aspect of the quality of life anywhere in the country. This infrastructure can be developed by government entities but also by non-profit and private businesses. RBC GAM’s impact investing strategies support these efforts by purchasing municipal bonds that fund community development and infrastructure projects that often simultaneously create job opportunities for those within that community.

Massachusetts housing finance agency (MassHousing) 

  • We work with Housing Finance Agencies to create custom MBS securities

  • MassHousing is an independent, quasi-public agency that has been providing financing for affordable housing in Massachusetts since 1966.

  • Their mission is to confront the housing challenges facing the Commonwealth to improve the lives of its people.

  • Since its inception, MassHousing has provided more than $22 billion for affordable housing.

  • They finance affordable rental housing through partnerships with jurisdictions and developers, and help low-to-moderate income homebuyers with down payment assistance, first mortgage loans, and in times of unemployment or other crises.

Affordable Housing

The City and County of San Francisco, CA, issued bonds to support the construction and/or renovation of 30,000 units of affordable housing over the next four years, with a focus on vulnerable populations such as the disabled, veterans and seniors. Funds will also be directed toward helping educators and middle income individuals with down-payment assistance on new homes.

Stakeholders:

  • Disabled
  • Seniors
  • LMI individuals 
  • Veterans
Sustainable Development Goals

Affordable Multi-Family Rental Housing

Bay Vista Commons – Bremerton, WA 

  • A unique facility that is the first of its kind in the State of Washington: an affordable senior living alternative that combines HUD Project Based Section 8 funds with Medicaid to provide assisted living services to individuals from the entire economic spectrum. 
     

  • Forty-five of the 72-units at Bay Vista Commons are designated for seniors at or below 30% of area median income. 
     

  • The idea for Bay Vista Commons grew out of Bremerton Housing Authority’s quest to expand its services for seniors and create a senior campus that provided a community for seniors to age in place and with dignity. 
     

  • Job creation in LMI area

Supporting people experiencing homelessness

Atlanta Development Authority Homeless Opportunity Project – Atlanta, GA

  • Finances the acquisition and renovation of emergency shelter, permanent supportive housing, and transportation projects
     

  • Addresses homelessness in Atlanta by providing housing for the chronically homeless, for those struggling with addiction and people in danger of becoming homeless
     

  • Supports housing interventions specifically for homeless youth

Dance & music studio – Albuquerque, NM

  • Family-owned studio offering dance, music, and gymnastics programs 
     

  • Their mission is to spread the love of performing arts by providing professional dance and music instruction to children of all ages and skill levels 
     

  • Instruction focuses on helping children build confidence, to value discipline and passion, and to form meaningful friendships in their community 
     

  • Job creation in a low income tract 

Elizabeth Seton Pediatric center – Yonkers, NY

  • The Elizabeth Seton Pediatric Center is a non-profit provider of pediatric, rehabilitative, and palliative care, committed to the holistic care of children and their families 

  • Serves 250 medically fragile children per year in the New York City area 

  • Staff members strive to provide residents with as many normalized childhood experiences as possible, building play and fun into each day 

  • The only LEED Gold certified “green” pediatric facility in the country

This early childhood development center in the Congress Heights neighborhood of Washington, DC, provides year-round care for children ages 6 weeks to 5 years. All teachers have a minimum of a Child Development Associate degree, and the facility is accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). The center can care for up to 60 children, and participates in the Subsidized Child Care Program, which is funded by state and local governments and helps families in need pay for quality childcare.

Stakeholders:
Environment
LMI individuals & communities

The Arkansas Development Finance Authority (ADFA) issued bonds to support the economic development of three businesses in the state:

  • ArkLam, LLC, which manufactures wood products, used the funding to acquire and re-start a production facility in Magnolia, Arkansas.

  • Sage V Foods, LLC processes rice and rice food products in Stuttgart, Arkansas and was able to expand processing and warehouse facilities.

  • Pre-Insulated Metal Technologies, Inc. manufactures metal panels for use in construction projects and was able to purchase equipment in their Little Rock, Arkansas facility.

The State of Rhode Island issued municipal bonds to support various capital improvements for 4 different programs: 1) Mass Transit Hub infrastructure connecting Massachusetts Bay Transit with RI Public Transit; 2) University of RI Innovation Campus Programs; 3) Urban Revitalization and Blight Remediation to improve properties that are blighted – both residential and commercial; and, 4) developing additional Affordable Housing across the state through new construction and redevelopment of existing structures 

Stakeholders:

  • Environment

  • Students

  • LMI individuals/community

The Economically Distressed Area Program (EDAP) in Texas provides financial assistance in the form of grants for water & wastewater projects serving economically distressed areas where water & sewer systems do not exist or require significant improvements. To be considered distressed, area median income can be no greater than 75% of the state median income. Water supply projects must be consistent with the current State’s Water Plan.

Stakeholders:
LMI communities
LMI individuals

Sustainable Development Goals:
The environment
Rural populations

Sustainable  development goals

Sustainable  development goals

Sustainable  development goals

Sustainable  development goals