Categories for Impact Stories

Bridging the Gap for Black Entrepreneurs

Jessica launched The Runway Project with Self-Help Credit Union and enlisted leaders in the Common Future network to support. As a result, the Runway Project has grown into a thriving project in Oakland, California. It demonstrated something Jessica has always known: that the underlying problem is not so much related to the entrepreneurs as it…

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When Residents Control Investment in Neighborhood Businesses

Today, the Boston Ujima Project is one of the best-known examples of democratizing control of capital in the United States. Ujima has created an impact investing fund where the community has decision-making power over investments to uplift local, people of color owned enterprises and grow community wealth. The fund is governed by voting members, all…

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Supporting Racial Equity in Baltimore

Baltimore Community Foundation operates from the knowledge that profound disparities in opportunity exist between people of color and their white counterparts, and is committed to reducing racial disparities and fostering more equity and inclusion through its grantmaking, impact investing, and advocacy. The support of the Foundation Circle cohort, along with the engaged leadership of a…

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Responding to Gentrification and Local Job Retention

March’s connections through the Common Future network enabled her to host workshops on succession planning for businesses in the area with Common Future Fellow Tomás Durán, and to connect with people in her region developing new models of economic change like Fellow Matt Stinchcomb of the Good Work Institute. Cohort learning with other place-based foundations…

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Transforming the Extractive Economy

Seed Commons is a national network of locally-rooted, non-extractive loan funds that brings the power of big finance under community control. Seed Commons takes in investment as a single fund, then shares that capital for local deployment into cooperative enterprises by and for communities, lowering risk while increasing impact. Since their first national convening in…

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Sustaining the Diversity of Cincinnati Communities

Derrick founded MORTAR alongside Allen Woods and William Thomas in 2014 to build communities through entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurs in the community can access their 15-week business training accelerator and opportunities for funding; as well as a revolving pop-up shop called Brick OTR. Derrick has made it his mission to ensure that all people in Cincinnati are…

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Community-Controlled Economies Drive Systems Change

“Just Transition is my religion.” — Lorna C. Hill, Founder and Artistic Director of Ujima Theatre Company Time and again it has been the radical political imagination of grassroots leaders from marginalized communities armed with the truth of their lived experience who have confronted oppressive systems through building collective power that allows for community-controlled systems to take…

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