AmeriCorps and CDFI Fund Launch Economic Mobility Corps

AmeriCorps and CDFI Fund Launch Economic Mobility Corps

More than $2.5 million invested to place 156 AmeriCorps members for two years in Community Development Financial Institutions

AmeriCorps and the U.S. Treasury Department’s Community Development Financial Institutions Fund (CDFI Fund) today announced three Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) were awarded more than $2.5 million through the inaugural round of the AmeriCorps CDFI Economic Mobility Corps (EMC) program.

“Providing far-reaching access to credit and capital in distressed communities requires the presence of a dedicated and committed team cadre with experience in delivering a range of financial education services,” said CDFI Fund Director Jodie Harris. ”Today’s EMC awards assists in building a deep bench of talent to help CDFIs deliver critical financial products and services in areas that are underserved by traditional financial services providers.”

A joint initiative of the CDFI Fund and AmeriCorps, this new national service program places full-time national service members in Certified CDFIs to support their work in distressed and underserved communities providing financial literacy, financial planning, budgeting, saving, and other financial counseling education. 

“This partnership leverages existing strengths in responding to economic disparities. By using intentional educational programming these long-term community-based organizations will serve the people in their neighborhoods to build better economic fluency for them, their children, and so many more,” said Sonali Nijhawan, Director, AmeriCorps State and National.

In total, award recipients will receive approximately $1.27 million in grant funding each year for two years to support the placement of service members in CDFIs over a two-year period. For the two year period, total award funding equals more than $2.55 million to sustain the placement of 78 AmeriCorps members each year. Of the 78 AmeriCorps members that will be placed in Certified CDFIs, 10 members (or 12.8% of all service members) will be located in Persistent Poverty Counties (PPCs).

As a result of their service, the AmeriCorps members supported by these awards are eligible for up to $989,000 in Segal AmeriCorps Education Awards to help offset college, trade or university expenses.

Authorization for EMC was provided by the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020 (Pub. L. 116-93), which also provided $2 million in funding to support the first round of EMC. An additional $556,416 in funds appropriated to AmeriCorps by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (Pub. L. 117-2) is being used to support this round of the program.

Certified CDFIs receiving EMC awards and the number of service members supported annually by each organization’s award, include:

  • LiftFund, Inc. (San Antonio, TX): $113,452/7 service members
  • Local Initiatives Support Corporation (New York, NY): $992,800/61 service members
  • Neighborhood Housing Services of South Florida, Inc. (Miami, FL): $171,956/10 service members

About the CDFI Fund

Since its creation in 1994, the CDFI Fund has awarded more than $3.9 billion to CDFIs, community development organizations, and financial institutions through the Bank Enterprise Award Program, the Capital Magnet Fund, the Community Development Financial Institutions Program, the Financial Education and Counseling Pilot Program, and the Native American CDFI Assistance Program. In addition, the CDFI Fund has allocated $61 billion in tax credit allocation authority to Community Development Entities through the New Markets Tax Credit Program, and guaranteed bonds for over $1.7 billion through the CDFI Bond Guarantee Program.

To learn more about the CDFI Fund and its programs, please visit the CDFI Fund’s website at www.cdfifund.gov

About AmeriCorps

AmeriCorps, the federal agency for national service and volunteering, brings people together to tackle the country’s most pressing challenges. AmeriCorps members and AmeriCorps Seniors volunteers serve with organizations dedicated to the improvement of communities. AmeriCorps helps make service to others a cornerstone of our national culture. Learn more at www.AmeriCorps.gov.  

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