The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) Developmental Loan Program helps combat the root causes of poverty, social injustice, and the exclusion from credit markets of people living in poverty. The program provides low-interest loans to underserved communities seeking self-sufficiency as they work to develop affordable housing, community-controlled businesses, micro-enterprise, and community economic systems. ELCA has partnered with the Florida Community Loan Fund by making an investment in FCLF in 2009. The funds invested will become a part of our community development loan pool and help finance community development for low-income and underserved populations throughout Florida.
Loan projects must meet the following criteria:
* Serve low-income people, targeting people and communities most in need
* Operate where there is limited access to conventional credit
* Generate the greatest impact for the longest period of time
* Provide for resident, worker, and community ownership
Criteria is based on the "Guidelines for ELCA World Hunger Program Activities."
Investing with these types of intermediaries has the following advantages:
* They are well-connected to the community and/or region they serve.
* They are accountable to a board of directors that has a fiduciary responsibility.
* They have a systematic approach to lending and a track record.
* They have the ability to combine funds for greater leverage.
* They are equipped to evaluate projects and provide technical assistance.
* They are able to monitor and provide better oversight.