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Presentation on theme: "NORTHWEST AREA IMMIGRANT ASSET- BUILDING INITIATIVE An Introduction."— Presentation transcript:


2 Who We Are The Federation is a national Community Development Financial Institution Intermediary and Membership Organization for Credit Unions Building Financial Security for Low- and Moderate-Income Americans Investing more than $30 million in CDCU members Building capacity and knowledge through: Targeted Trainings Credit Union Consulting Services Technical Assistance Partnership Facilitation Promoting innovation and tracking impact

3 Who We Are GCIR’s mission is to influence the philanthropic field to advance the contributions and address the needs of the country’s growing and increasingly diverse immigrant and refugee populations. 80 member foundations with wide-ranging interests and priorities. Helps funders to: 1. Learn about current issues Learn 2. Connect with other funders Connect 3. Collaborate with grantmaking colleagues Collaborate 3

4 The Challenge and Opportunity Foreign-born share of the total US population has risen from 7.9% in 1990 to 13% in 2011, representing 40.4 million people (Immigration Policy Center) Nationwide, about 8 million immigrants are eligible to naturalize. Over 500,000 live in the targeted states. (Dept. of Homeland Security, 2011) But 22.2% of foreign-born non-citizens are unbanked and 28.9% are under-banked; 18.9% never had an account (FDIC 2011 Survey) Costs of naturalization have increased 610% between 1998 and 2008, contributing to decline of applicants from 1.4 million to 526K in 2008 (National Council of La Raza)

5 The Initiative - Goals Provide access to safe, affordable financing for immigrants seeking naturalization, DACA, and permanent residency Integrate with legal and social services to provide a holistic, “one-stop shop” solution for immigrants Use immigration application fees as the entry point to provide a suite of advanced services to help build credit/assets, debt solutions, affordable remittances, financial counselling Support and evaluate the impact of pilot and document the experience

6 The Initiative - Structure 2-3 page Letter of Intent due February 7, 2014 to Letter of Intent should include: Brief background of partner credit unions and immigrant service providers with clear identification of lead applicant Outline of current/or proposed partnership and how credit union products and services address the needs of immigration service clients and vice versa Description of organization and clients’ expected outcomes Assessment of challenges or obstacles associated with this initiative Discussion of how support could help overcome these challenges Attachment of 501(c)(3) status for immigrant service providers

7 The Initiative - Timeline February 7, 2014: Letters of Intent due to the Federation February 17, 2014: Selection of credit union-nonprofit partnerships invited to submit full proposals finalized March 17, 2104: Full proposals due; these should detail the proposed partnership, the types of products and services identified as needed by clients, process for connecting clients to those services, and mechanism for tracking outcomes March 18 – April 8, 2014: Two partnerships selected and awarded grants of $37,500 for 12 months April 9, 2014: Selected partnerships announced May 1, 2014: Pilot program launched by selected partnerships May 1, 2104 – June 30, 2015: Pilot program start-up phase, implementation, ongoing reporting and evaluation, and participation in events and other learning networks

8 The Initiative – Criterion for Credit Unions Must be financially sound: sufficient capacity with regards to loan deployment, staff number, asset quality, capital ratio, operation size, etc. Experience with immigrant communities, multilingual staff Ability to fully promote the program (both online and other methods of outreach) Experience implementing innovative projects Relevant geographic reach as it relates to immigrant communities Commitment to implementing this project and working for immigrants Willingness to learn about the uniqueness of the target communities and the ability to design and adjust the program according to those needs Must be flexible about accepting alternative forms of identification Have an existing relationship with immigrant communities

9 The Initiative – Criterion for Immigrant Service Providers Focus and commitment to serve immigrant communities Staff capacity to have a point person to lead this initiative Appropriate volume of clients to maximize impact on the end-user as well as partner CDCUs Legal services capacity Experience partnering with other institutions based on formal referral systems Commitment to learn and integrate financial services into services portfolio Financial stability and reliable funding stream Commitment to joint branding and promotions Outreach/Legal services plan Existing communications infrastructure and capacity to integrate this initiative into communications strategy (i.e. with ethnic media outlets)

10 Best Practices- DACA and Naturalization Latino Community Credit Union: More than 1,600 DACA loans since 2012, no credit score or income requirements, 2% write-offs; one account provides membership services to the whole family Casa de MD: Over 8,000 consultations on naturalization, 1,900 applications, 230 loans to pay for application fees (2012 – 2013) Credit union representatives attending DACA information sessions organized by immigrant-serving organizations to provide information and answer questions

11 Best Practices Setting up an alternate lending standard for immigrant communities: One form of government-issued ID, such as: Foreign passports, voter cards, “Green Card” Consular IDs (e.g. matrícula consular) Driver’s Licenses Individual Taxpayer Identification Number Alternative Proof of Income: Utility or rent bills paid to show income Other transactional records (i.e. remittances) Filed tax forms

12 Best Practices Bilingual staff and translated documents/signage Full transparency of loan terms for borrowers Keep underwriting simple No “hit & run” approach: a relational loan that will lead to other products and services Community visibility: borrowers must know who you are

13 Q & A Credit Unions can contact Jason Chang, Program Associate, at Immigrant service providers can contact Walter Barrientos, Project Manager, at This Initiative is made possible with funding from the Northwest Area Foundation. We look forward to receiving your Letters of Intent!


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