A group of people posing for a photo in front of a brick wall.Small businesses are the backbone of our economy. For a neighborhood of color to thrive and push back against pressures of displacement and disinvestment, small business ownership by members of the community itself is essential. Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) provide affordable capital to small business owners who are often ignored by banks or preyed upon by predatory lenders.

In 2021, Rise Economy launched The Resilience Fund. Comprising contributions from banks and philanthropic partners, the $4.5 million Resilience Fund was established to incubate a cohort of 11 new and emerging BIPOC-led CDFIs across the state. Chosen by a Community Advisory Committee and operating in 22 counties, these organizations provide capital and technical assistance to low-income BIPOC small business owners and micro-entrepreneurs throughout the state. Each cohort member received unrestricted two-year grants of $250,000, along with comprehensive training, technical assistance, peer learning and connections to banks and funders.

Funding partners of the Resilience Loan Fund include included The Walter & Elise Haas Fund, Capital One, Cathay Bank, Chase, City National Bank, East West Bank, First Citizens Bank, First Republic Bank, Flagstar Bank, Mechanics Bank, National Community Reinvestment Coalition, Pacific Premier Bank, Signature Bank, Silicon Valley Bank, Tri Counties Bank, Wells Fargo, and U.S. Bank.

Resilience Fund Cohort Members

  • African Americans for Economic Empowerment – Oakland
  • Black Cultural Zone CDC – Oakland
  • Chinatown Service Center – Los Angeles
  • Coalition for Responsible Community Development – Los Angeles
  • Community Services Unlimited Inc. – Los Angeles
  • Creser Capital Fund – Marin County
  • Entrepinayship – Long Beach
  • First Community Capital – Inland Empire
  • Fresno Area Hispanic Foundation – Fresno
  • Inclusive Action for the City – Los Angeles
  • Native First Lending  – Los Angeles]

Resilience Fund Impact

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Million dollars in loans made to small businesses and micro-entrepreneurs.

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Loans processed.

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Loan originations

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High-interest loans refinanced

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Average repayment rate

Resilience Fund Impact, Continued

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Small businesses with three to 20 employees created/sustained

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Micro-businesses with three or fewer employees created/sustained

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Jobs created/retained through cohort's lending activities

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Affordable housing or ADU units created, preserved, rehabilitated

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Families positively impacted

Resilience Fund Case Study

First Community Capital is an aspiring CDFI and cohort member of the Resilience Fund. Since 2019, First Community Capital has supported underserved small business owners in Riverside and San Bernardino counties. A notable example of their impact is their work with Hair by Franchelle, a BIPOC and woman-owned business specializing in a diverse range of hairstyles and techniques from different cultures. With financing and support from First Community Capital, Franchelle expanded her business and is now planning to open a larger salon to offer an extended range of products and services.

First Community Capital provided Franchelle with the necessary capital and technical assistance to navigate her business expansion. Their support has been pivotal in enabling her to plan for a comprehensive beauty hub that will offer top-tier services and products. The ability of First Community Capital to support Franchelle’s business growth demonstrates the Resilience Fund’s potential for positive impact. The fund has allowed First Community Capital to increase its loan offerings, hire staff, and enhance its community support, demonstrating the substantial impact of targeted financial assistance on BIPOC-owned businesses.

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