New Loan Closing: Casita Maria
Unlocking youth creativity in the South Bronx
$250,000 bridge loan (October 2020)
Casita Maria was established in 1934 as the first charitable organization dedicated to Latinx residents of New York City. Headquartered in the South Bronx, the organization provides cultural, art, and educational services to predominately Latino youth and families in the Hunts Point neighborhood. In addition, Casita Maria operates a state of the art cultural center that includes performance spaces, an exhibition gallery, dance and music studios, and a middle and high school. Every day, more than 1,000 students come through the organization's doors to learn, explore and develop their talents, and establish a lifelong love for the arts. All of these students come from low-income families whose access to arts programs has been restricted; the vast majority identify as Black or Latinx.
Casita Maria relies on contracts with New York City and New York State for a large portion of its funding. However, these contracts are frequently delayed – even more so since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Financed through NFF's zero-interest CARE Fund, this loan will provide Casita Maria with the working capital it needs to continue paying its staff and offering its extensive array of programs for young people. Since many schools went remote in March 2020, young people have struggled to access opportunities to connect with the arts and build social and emotional skills; we're proud to invest in Casita Maria’s efforts to support their students' creativity.
Learn more about our loan products on the financing page of our website.