Building Equitable Prosperity
We're pleased to share our 2024-26 strategic plan, which centers our commitment to nonprofits and upholds our deep commitment to racial equity. NFF invests in nonprofits that play a critical and often undervalued role in building community wealth and well-being. Our work will continue to focus on nonprofits anchored in and serving communities divested of their own wealth, where our capital and resources can contribute to building equitable prosperity.
Core Strategic Commitments:
- Continue and deepen our commitment to racial equity;
- remain focused on supporting nonprofits;
- enhance NFF’s long-term sustainability; and
- contribute to community- and systems-level change toward more equitable prosperity.
Theory of Change: NFF effects change in communities by working with nonprofits, partners, and systems to build racial equity and community wealth and well-being. This leads to:
- Greater agency of community members to control community resources
- More jobs and services that support thriving local economies
- Healthier, more vibrant communities
Equity Commitment: We continuously refine and strengthen our commitment to racial equity. Our Equity Commitment asserts the centrality of racial equity in our work and articulates our beliefs and how those beliefs translate into actions.
Our Clients: Communities of color have long been excluded from building wealth due to institutional and systemic racism, and so we are especially focused on supporting and partnering with organizations led by and serving people of color:
- 50%+ of our nonprofit clients have leaders who identity as persons of color
- 75%+ of our clients are primarily serving communities of color
- 75%+ of our clients work in communities most disconnected from economic prosperity, such as low-income and rural communities
Community Engagement is core to how we approach our work. Our Community Engagement team helps NFF to listen to needs on the ground, learn from community experiences, and design jointly with community partners to arrive at how NFF can best contribute to a community’s envisioned goal.
Strategic Plan: Elements
Our work is organized into Strategic Pillars and Emerging Opportunities.
Strategic Pillar 1: Capital
As a CDFI, we provide capital through: Financing, which can take the form of loans, grants, equity and equity-like equivalents, including our New Markets Tax Credit Program; regranting opportunities; and a newly formalized business, NFF Impact Investing Services.
NFF’s loan products help nonprofits acquire or renovate facilities, strengthen their operations with working capital, and meet cash flow needs while waiting for payment from committed grants and government contracts. Our New Markets Tax Credit Program supports large community facility projects in severely distressed census tracts.
Our NFF Impact Investing Services business supports investors who want to make equitable funding and financing available to meet community needs, including for smaller nonprofits. Services will include advising and training philanthropic staff looking to expand their community investments beyond grantmaking and support designing and managing customized loan funds for those seeking new mechanisms for achieving social impact.
Strategic Pillar 2: Consulting
NFF’s Consulting practice partners with clients to craft practical, customized solutions to making financial decisions that bolster mission work. We offer one-on-one engagements with nonprofits, as well as cohort-based convenings, workshops, and partnerships. We help nonprofits, funders, financial institutions, and government entities equitably connect money to mission and community impact; provide education on nonprofit financial management; and equip leaders to make financial decisions that best serve their missions.
Strategic Pillar 3: Advocacy
The third core pillar of work under this strategy is advocacy, which includes our thought leadership. Over the next three years, we will formalize and expand our advocacy activity. We will focus our advocacy on: ensuring funding continues to flow to the CDFI sector; ensuring government funding is appropriately inclusive of nonprofits; and influencing policies and practices to support more equitable funding flows to nonprofits.
Lots of ideas and dreams were put on hold because we didn't know if we were going to get evicted or not. We're just getting to the point with NFF's support and the support of others where we can really start to envision the future.
Aligning Our Work with Emerging Opportunities
NFF identified three emerging areas for our community-responsive work.
Challenging Inequitable Government Funding Practices: NFF will provide capital solutions and strategies/knowledge to help nonprofits manage the challenges of government funding, while also advancing and advocating for government contracts for nonprofits that pay on time and cover costs fully.
Community Ownership of Assets: Building Equitable Assets for Communities and Nonprofits (BEACoN): NFF services will help community-centered nonprofits to participate in real estate investments that build community-level wealth in different forms.
Environmental Justice: Combatting the Effects of Environmental Racism: NFF’s financing and consulting services will connect local nonprofits to the growing funding opportunities aimed at addressing environmental, health, and climate challenges, especially for communities of color.
To learn more about NFF's strategy, including goals for each strategic pillar, download our 2024-2026 strategic plan below.
The most important thing I learned from working with NFF is the importance of drawing out the financial value of what we do. It's all the little things our agencies do that make our work innovative. We are now in a better position to articulate our actual costs and the value we bring to the health care system.