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Philanthropy Thought Leader Uncategorized

GoATL Fund invests $1 million to strengthen underserved communities

Jonny Newburgh

By Jonny Newburgh, impact investment associate, Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta

In 2018 the Community Foundation launched the GoATL Fund (GoATL), an impact investing fund that aims to accelerate social impact through cost-effective loans to nonprofits and social enterprises.

GoATL recently closed a $1 million investment to Reinvestment Fund to support a diverse portfolio of impactful investments throughout metro Atlanta. Focused primarily on low-income neighborhoods with historically deprived levels of investment, GoATL’s investment provides flexible capital to support initiatives in affordable housing, the arts, education and food access.

This investment will allow Reinvestment Fund to expand local financing options for community centers, grocery stores, health centers, schools and more. In terms of both geography and impact areas of concern, Reinvestment Fund’s work aligns closely with GoATL’s goals to support sustainable and scalable solutions for communities in need.

Since 2014, Reinvestment Fund has invested $30 million throughout greater Atlanta, creating or preserving 200 early childhood education slots, supporting over 1,000 jobs and creating or preserving nearly 300 housing units.

Christina Szczepanski, managing director for the Southeast with Reinvestment Fund, emphasized the impact this funding will have. “GoATL’s support for Reinvestment Fund’s local capacity will allow us and our partners to expand lending practices in the Atlanta metro area. We are excited to work with such a well-respected local partner as the Community Foundation and the GoATL Fund which we hope will also inspire others to invest in our work locally.”

During 2018 the GoATL Fund invested $3.25 million in loans that seek to generate a measurable social outcome along with a financial return. Unlike traditional philanthropy that typically relies on grants, GoATL’s impact investments are structured as flexible, cost-effective loans that are expected to be paid back, thus recycling the dollars to consistently fund new initiatives into the future. In its first year, GoATL’s investments supported affordable housing, community centers, energy efficiency improvements, low-income entrepreneurs, school renovations and more.

Read more details about this investment on our blog.

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