Fund provides for community redevelopment following disasters
In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, Everence Community Investments is investing $500,000 through the Isaiah Fund to provide capital for long-term redevelopment needs in communities ravaged by the storm.
Everence, formerly Mennonite Mutual Aid, is the stewardship agency of Mennonite Church USA and has long-standing ties to USMB and other denominations with historic Anabaptist roots.
Founded by Everence Community Investments and five other faith-based investor organizations, the Isaiah Fund is dedicated to investing in communities devastated by disaster. Following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, the Isaiah Fund raised and/or invested $5 million and made more than $3 million in community development deposits and loans throughout the Gulf Coast, focusing on low-income neighborhoods in New Orleans.
Since then, the Isaiah Fund has begun to turn its attention to other regions of the country impacted by disasters.
Hurricane Sandy, which hit the east coast of the United States in late October 2012, caused tens of billions of dollars in damage. According to the Center for Disaster Philanthropy, the storm caused an estimated $50 billion in losses, putting it as one of the worst natural disasters ever to occur in the United States.
“As people of faith, we are compelled to help our neighbors in times of need,” says Mark Regier, Everence Director of Stewardship Investing. “While addressing immediate human needs after a disaster is critical, it is often long-term economic development that ensures a bright future for already disadvantaged communities. That’s why investment in The Isaiah Fund made by Everence Community Investments and others are so important.”
Everence Community Investments seeks innovative ways to channel investment dollars to underserved communities across the country and around the world. These community development investments provide support for projects such as neighborhood revitalization, low- income housing, church construction, microfinance and ecological enterprises.
Everence, headquartered in Goshen, Ind., helps individuals, organizations and congregations integrate finances with faith through a national team of advisors and representatives. Everence offers banking, insurance and financial services with community benefits and stewardship education. USMB congregations are among the churches that annually receive grants through the Everence Sharing Fund program that is designed to serve individuals facing financial distress.
To learn more, visit www.everence.com or call (800) 348-7468.