On Friday, February 25th, Katherine Townsend Kiernan with the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta’s Center for Workforce and Economic Opportunity joined MAX to lead a conversation on how CDFIs are meaningfully engaging with the workforce development ecosystem to advance equity and affordability for workforce development within their communities. Kiernan presented three case studies that illustrated how CDFIs increase access to capital for the physical infrastructure needs of training programs, offer operational capital for new social enterprises, and create equitable access to tuition loans not traditionally available to certain segments of the population, particularly low-income borrowers.
The case studies featured the partnerships of Freedom First Credit Union (FFCU) and Commercial Driver Services, Inc. (CDS) in Roanoke, VA; Ivy Tech Community College and Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) in the Mid North neighborhood of Indianapolis, and Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF) and Atlanta-based First Step Staffing in Philadelphia.
Key takeaways include:
- CDFIs have existing tools to finance training, education, and infrastructure, which enables sustainable growth in local labor markets
- CDFIs and workforce development organizations are primed to expand collaboration given their shared goal to increase economic inclusion
- Working together will bring diverse players, and consequently more funding, into the workforce development system by raising awareness of successful partnerships and developing a stronger shared interest across stakeholders
Special thanks to MAX Board Secretary and program lead for MAX Minutes, Daniela Perry, Vice President, Georgia Chamber, for moderating the session.
Click here for the presentation.
Click here for the recording.
ABOUT MAX MINUTES
Launched in 2014, the mission of MAX is to advance economic competitiveness in the Atlanta region by strengthening connections, collaborations, and practices among workforce developers and organizations engaged in workforce development.
Through our webinar series, MAX Minutes, MAX seeks to bring timely insights to providers, intermediaries, and other partners in workforce. MAX Minutes features talks by key experts in the Atlanta region and beyond on important workforce matters.