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Oregon Community Foundation

The economic downturn brought on by the recession prompted Oregon Community Foundation (OCF) to expand its priorities to include jobs and the economy. The foundation co-sponsored a study to identify both sources of capital and undercapitalized sectors across the state. Finding that seed and early stage companies were undercapitalized, the board decided to commit one-half of one percent of the endowment to Oregon-based early stage funds. Since 2012, OCF has made more than $900,000 in grants to organizations that help to develop a skilled workforce. It has also provided a $100,000 grant to Albina Opportunities Corporation, a local CDFI that a few OCF donors helped to found, which specializes in lending to women-, minority- and immigrant-owned businesses, as well as other business owners who can’t access traditional bank financing. OCF made a $1 million loan to a regional CDFI, Craft3, to support small business lending in rural communities, and the board has committed $2 million for lending to nonprofits.

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