‘The Rockefeller Foundation Opportunity Collective’ Launches with $10 Million Commitment to Promoting Inclusive Growth in 10 U.S. Cities

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“This challenging moment in our history demands that we address persistent barriers that deny opportunity and chances for success.  The City of Norfolk is extremely grateful for its continued partnership with The Rockefeller Foundation.  As a part of the Opportunity Collective, we look forward to confronting chronic disparities in small business lending, taking down barriers to credit for Norfolk’s entrepreneurs and low wage workers, and aiding communities economically impacted by COVID-19.” ─ Norfolk Mayor Kenneth Cooper Alexander

June 16, 2020 – Today, The Rockefeller Foundation announced the launch of The Rockefeller Foundation Opportunity Collective (ROC), which focuses to catalyze investment from the public and private sectors in places to endorse more inclusive growth in the post-pandemic recovery and over the long term.

The Rockefeller Foundation has guaranteed an initial $10 million, which it will administer to government, business, faith-based, and non-profit partners in 10 places across the country, over several years. In these places, the Foundation will fund partners, projects, and programs with two main goals: protecting communities from displacement, and eliminating barriers to access capital and credit among low-wage workers and small businesses owned by women, black, and Latinx owners.

The ROC includes the following 10 cities: Atlanta, Ga.; Boston, Mass.; Chicago, Ill.; El Paso, Tex.; Miami Dade County, Fla.; Houston, Tex.; Louisville, Ky.; Newark, N.J.; Norfolk, Va.; and Oakland, Calif.

Negative or nonexistent credit information, cash constraints, lack of availability of private capital and access to affordable financing restrict any community’s economic development. These circumstances also result to a loss of job opportunities, limit housing options, and essentially restrict the goals of many low and middle-income families.

The ROC will also focus its efforts in incorporating loans and equity for people of color and women-owned businesses, credit-strengthening tools for small businesses, affordable borrowing, and capacity development, among other resources.

The $10 million commitment behind The ROC is part of the Foundation’s extensive $65 million investment announced in February to aid more than 10 million low-wage workers and their families across the country, to satisfy their basic needs and go after a more fruitful future.