West Sacramento, Calif. – The W.K. Kellogg Foundation recently made a $1 million Program Related Investment (PRI) and a $1 million companion grant to Rural Community Assistance Corporation (RCAC) in support of the Rainmakers Investment Collaborative (Collaborative). The Collaborative was established to increase impact investing in and improve access to capital by Native community development efforts in Arizona and New Mexico.

Confluence Philanthropy, which advances mission-aligned investments, and its members launched the Collaborative in 2017. Through the Collaborative, partners aim to substantially increase the foundation sector’s investment capital and lending to Tribes in the Southwest. RCAC is the Collaborative’s key investment partner and will provide loans to Tribes, Tribal communities and individual Native Americans for small business, housing and community facility projects. RCAC also will work with several Native-led Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) in this effort. Native Capital Access is RCAC’s initial local partner. Other founding Collaborative members include The Santa Fe Community Foundation and The Christensen Fund.

“We are pleased to add the Kellogg Foundation to the list of partners in the Rainmaker Investment Collaborative. We are especially pleased to join with them in our efforts to support community and economic development in Native communities throughout Arizona and New Mexico and to strengthen Native CDFIs,” said Stanley Keasling, RCAC chief executive officer.  The Kellogg Foundation PRI is intended to increase the economic security, educational success and overall well-being of Native American families by providing low-interest loans deployed in collaboration with Native CDFIs and community organizations. The Kellogg Foundation grant supports RCAC’s Building Rural Economies (BRE) program. BRE trains and builds community support for local entrepreneurial development based on local resources and supply chains. The grant will also support RCAC’s capacity building technical assistance to Native CDFIs—RCAC also is a certified CDFI.

As a result of the innovative efforts of Confluence Philanthropy, RCAC, NCA, and other Collaborative partners, many more Native American borrowers will have access to loans specifically dedicated to Tribal communities that generate new businesses, housing and community facilities; and in turn, create jobs, affordable housing and enhance space for vital community services to increase quality of life for Tribal residents.

Founded in 1978, RCAC provides training, technical and financial resources and advocacy so rural communities can achieve their goals and visions. RCAC serves rural communities in 13 western states and the Pacific islands. Most of our work in Alaska, Hawaii and the western Pacific is focused in Native communities. RCAC also works with majority Latino communities and Tribes across the Southwest. RCAC provides a broad range of community and economic development services and lending to support local efforts. To find out more about RCAC’s Loan Fund products, visit http://www.rcac.org/programs-services/

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), founded in 1930 as an independent, private foundation by breakfast cereal pioneer, Will Keith Kellogg, is among the largest philanthropic foundations in the United States. Guided by the belief that all children should have an equal opportunity to thrive, WKKF works with communities to create conditions for vulnerable children so they can realize their full potential in school, work and life. The Kellogg Foundation is based in Battle Creek, Michigan, and works throughout the United States and internationally, as well as with sovereign tribes. Special emphasis is paid to priority places where there are high concentrations of poverty and where children face significant barriers to success. WKKF priority places in the U.S. are in Michigan, Mississippi, New Mexico and New Orleans; and internationally, are in Mexico and Haiti. For more information, visit www.wkkf.org.

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Julia Helmreich, director
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