In April, IFF closed nine loans totaling $14,278,499 for community-driven projects in the Midwest. We’ve included below a roundup with information about several of the organizations that received the loans and what they’re doing with the capital. To learn more about IFF’s lending, visit our Capital Solutions page.
City Garden Montessori Charter School
City Garden Montessori School, a charter school in St. Louis, MO, received a New Markets Tax Credit source loan of $7,160,853 from IFF to facilitate the adaptive reuse of a 53,000-square-foot facility that will be used as an elementary and middle school serving more than 750 students. In addition to increasing City Garden’s enrollment by approximately 500 students, the loan will enable City Garden to launch a training institute for teachers to lead anti-biased, anti-racist Montessori classrooms in St. Louis schools.
Full Circle Communities, Inc
With a mission to expand access to quality affordable housing, the nonprofit Full Circle Communities, Inc (FCC) develops and manages over 1,000 units of affordable housing throughout the Midwest and in Florida. FCC requested a $878,000 loan to finance tenant improvements in commercial space on the first floor of a seven-story, mixed-use project called 5150 Northwest Highway in Chicago. The project will include 75 residential units, 60 of which will be dedicated to residents at or below 60% AMI, and 4,500 square feet of commercial space. The IFF loan will specifically be used to build out space that will be used by the nonprofit Friendship Community Place as a nonprofit business incubator, community activity space, and commercial kitchen.
Habitat for Humanity of Kosciusko County
Habitat for Humanity of Kosciusko County (HFHKC), located in Warsaw, IN, received a loan of up to $450,000 from IFF to facilitate the acquisition of a 12,000-sq-ft facility that the organization was previously leasing for office, retail, and storage space. Purchasing the facility will enable HFHKC to build equity and provide stability for the organization’s operations during a period of rapid growth. The organization’s resale outlet, located in the facility, sells donated furniture, appliances, and other home improvement goods at highly discounted prices. The resale outlet makes home maintenance affordable, and the revenue goes toward building more homes through Habitat’s main program. Since its inception in 1991, HFHKC has built more than 35 homes for Kosciusko County families in need of safe, decent, affordable housing.
Highland Community School
Highland Community School, a Montessori school that serves a diverse socio-economic population in Milwaukee, WI, received a loan of $2,498,000 from IFF to build a 3,820-sq-ft addition to the school’s existing facility (architectural rendering featured above) and to refinance the outstanding balance of a loan IFF made in 2015 for the school to acquire the property. The loan facilitated a minimum of 24 new seats in a high-performing, mixed-income public charter school that currently serves 420 students in grades K3-8 and provides child care for children from 14 months old through eighth grade.
Obsidian Collection Archives
IFF provided Obsidian Collection Archives with a loan of $1,170,000 to purchase the historic Lu Palmer mansion located in Chicago’s Bronzeville neighborhood. Obsidian’s mission is to preserve Black history by showcasing current and historical Black journalism via its website, the Obsidian Collection, which is accomplished by digitizing historical documents and physically storing original copies in an archive for safekeeping. IFF’s predevelopment loan will help Obsidian move forward in the development process by showcasing architectural drawings of the renovated facility to secure support for the project from community stakeholders. Once work is complete, the site will include a small photography museum, studio space for young artists, event and conference meeting spaces for local organizations, a retail and coffee shop, and administrative and storage space for the Obsidian Collection team.
Red Clay Dance Company
IFF closed a $311,646 loan for Red Clay Dance Company to finance tenant improvements to the company’s 3,708-sq-ft dance center in Chicago’s Woodlawn community. Red Clay Dance is a Chicago-based nonprofit that creates, performs, and teaches dances of the African Diaspora as a platform for “Artivism” (Art + Activism). Red Clay Dance Company’s space is part of a mixed-used property that required updates for the company to grow its programs, deepen engagement with the community, recruit new artists and stage more performances.