Canada's first and only impact bank ensuring the most vulnerable aren't forgotten in crisis
Traditional territory of many Indigenous Nations, including the Haudenosaunee and the treaty territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit and TORONTO, March 30, 2020 /CNW/ - Vancity Community Investment Bank (VCIB), Canada's first values-driven national bank and a subsidiary of Vancouver City Savings Credit Union (Vancity), has partnered with three of Ontario's largest community foundations to provide rapid-response funds aimed at supporting those most affected by COVID-19 and its economic consequences.
In Toronto, VCIB and Toronto Foundation have joined forces to launch the Better Toronto Coalition and Fund. The bank has also partnered with Ottawa Community Foundation to fund the COVID-19 Rapid Response Fund, and with the Hamilton Community Foundation to fund the Pandemic Response Fund. In total, VCIB has provided $100,000 to-date to seed and grow these funds designed to provide immediate support to community organizations delivering essential services like food, shelter and healthcare to vulnerable populations.
The unique approach targets grassroots non-profits that are both operating on the frontlines of COVID-19 and feeling its economic consequences as key funding sources dwindle with programming and fundraising events cancelled or postponed.
"Grassroots non-profits often operate on tight margins," said VCIB CEO Jay-Ann Gilfoy. "Our goal as a community-first bank is to get frontline organizations the resources they need so they can focus on meeting the urgent needs of vulnerable populations."
"The economic fallout will have an impact on charities in every sector that we serve," said Hamilton Community Foundation President & CEO Terry Cooke. "Our message to the community is that we are here to help for the long term."
Funding will be offered as unrestricted, flexible grants that enable charities and non-profits to maintain or expand services to those affected by quarantine, closures, shortages, access to services, loss of income, or other economic impacts.
"We're convening concerned Torontonians so that we can learn together about the unequal impacts of COVID-19," said Toronto Foundation President & CEO Sharon Avery. "We're committed to acting quickly on those learnings to fund the small but mighty non-profits that are in the trenches supporting the city's most vulnerable."
"Priorities are changing by the hour, and these funds are designed to respond to the most pressing needs," said VCIB VP of Impact Banking Jake Stacey. "Our mission has always been to use the tools of finance to create positive change for groups who need it most, and partnerships with community foundations will allow us to help vulnerable sectors lacking other assistance."
"While we cannot control this new reality, we can come together to respond," said Ottawa Community Foundation President & CEO Marco Pagani. "Thank you to Vancity Community Investment Bank for joining us to help fund our community response."
In addition to the philanthropic community, VCIB is working to mobilize other organizations to participate in these initiatives.
About Vancity Community Investment Bank (VCIB) VCIB is an Ontario-based schedule 1 national chartered bank. As Canada's first values-driven bank, VCIB partners exclusively with organizations that drive social, economic, and environmental change. The bank is committed to connecting these visionary enterprises with the financial solutions they require, enabling them to grow, prosper and foster change. VCIB's first focus is on lending for social purpose real estate (affordable housing, co-op housing, co-working spaces, green and heritage buildings), as well as meeting the deposit needs of not-for-profit organizations, foundations, and social enterprises. For more information, visit vcib.ca, tweet us at @BankVancity and connect with us at Facebook.com/BankVancity.
About Vancity Vancity is a values-based financial co-operative serving the needs of its more than 534,000 member-owners and their communities, with offices and 59 branches located in Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, Victoria, Squamish and Alert Bay, within the unceded territories of the Coast Salish and Kwakwaka'wakw people. With $27.4 billion in assets plus assets under administration, Vancity is Canada's largest community credit union. Vancity uses its assets to help improve the financial well-being of its members while at the same time helping to develop healthy communities that are socially, economically and environmentally sustainable.
About Toronto Foundation Established in 1981, Toronto Foundation is one of 191 Community Foundations in Canada. We pool philanthropic dollars and facilitate charitable donations for maximum community impact. Our individual, family and organizational Funds number more than 500 and we administer more than $400 million in assets. Through strategic granting, thought leadership and convening, we engage in city building, mobilizing people and resources to increase the quality of life in Toronto. Visit www.torontofoundation.ca/.
About the Ottawa Community Foundation Established in 1987, the OCF is a charitable organization created by and for the people of Ottawa. Working directly with its community of donors, partners and stakeholders, the OCF is committed to acting as a catalyst for positive, systemic and sustainable change in Ottawa and beyond. Priding itself on enabling generous citizens to enhance the quality of life in their community while achieving their own charitable objectives, the OCF has provided over $137M in grants to the community since its inception. Visit http://www.ocf-fco.ca.
About Hamilton Community Foundation Hamilton Community Foundation has been working to drive positive change in Hamilton since 1954. We do this by helping people give in a way that has meaning to them and impact in the community, providing grants and financing to charitable organizations and initiatives and bringing people together to address priority issues that affect Hamiltonians. Visit www.hamiltoncommunityfoundation.ca.
For further information: For more information on VCIB's partnerships with Toronto Foundation, Ottawa Community Foundation and Hamilton Community Foundation, please contact Nicole Hanley: [email protected]