Through a unique collaboration with the City of Edmonton, Edmonton Community Foundation (ECF) created and evolved the Social Enterprise Fund.
The Social Enterprise Fund (SEF) offers patient debt financing to those working to deliver public benefit missions across Alberta. Any organization, be it a non-profit or for-profit, needs capital to grow. Sometimes, the organizations that are working to improve their communities have difficulty accessing traditional financing sources. This is where SEF steps in.
Since its launch in 2008, SEF has provided loans of all shapes and sizes to more than 40 organizations. These loans are for everything from improving access to locally produced food to cleaning the environment. They can range from building affordable housing to creating jobs for at-risk youth. Whatever the purpose, these loans help improve the community. Many loans have been paid-in-full, with the capital recycled into new investments.
This unique resource brings a bright future for our community, which is why we have committed 10% of our total endowments to impact investing. We were the first community foundation to accept the 2010 challenge of the Canadian Task Force on Social Enterprise. Other organizations and private investors have added to the capital pool, including Edmonton’s United Way, the Alberta Real Estate Foundation, and the Drayton Community Foundation.