News and Insights

Impact in Action: Investing in a Local Food Bank

01/26/2016

Seth Benziger, Impact Capital | As a community development financial institutition, Impact Capital has focused on providing financing for affordable housing projects in Oregon and Washington. In the past year, however, we branched out by making a bridge loan to the University District Food Bank, so the Seattle nonprofit could move into a bigger space and serve more clients. As we turn the page on this impact investment, we can review five parts of the story: what prompted this investment, what's been easy, what's been challenging, what have we learned — and what's next? more »

Nine Predictions for Philanthropy in 2016

01/12/2016

Jeff Clarke, CEO | Welcome to 2016! Philanthropy’s core DNA is love for humanity and community. Here in the Pacific Northwest, we celebrate a unique philanthropic culture marked by optimism, generosity, civic engagement and stewardship. It rests upon our nation’s unique commitment to philanthropic freedom and donor intent. But above all, our big, diverse place defines us, from Alaska’s North Slope to southern Oregon, and the Pacific coast to eastern Montana and Wyoming. In other words, as American farmer and writer Wendell Berry observed, “If you don’t know where you are, you don’t know who you are.” Looking ahead to what is sure to be a dynamic year, philanthropy, with its ability to gather people around the public good, is more important than ever. more »

Pay for Success Opportunities: Call for Proposals

01/06/2016

Pay for Success (PFS) is a form of government contracting in which third-party investors, including foundations, commit to paying the upfront costs for providing evidence-based social services; government agencies repay investors with a modest return if the program achieves the agreed-upon outcomes. For other funders interested in exploring this emerging model of impact investing, Philanthropy Northwest has learned of three new opportunities through the Corporation for National and Community Service's Social Innovation Fund and the University of Utah’s Policy Innovation Lab. more »

Paying for Success in the Northwest

12/21/2015

Jeff Clarke, CEO | The Pacific Northwest has a unique and globally influential culture marked by innovation, entrepreneurship, civic engagement, generosity and stewardship. Our region’s commitment to innovation drives our growing leadership in impact investing — leveraging private capital for social good. Impact investors seek opportunities to earn a financial return while also doing something good for society. Their aspirations are changing the way we think about solutions to big social problems like homelessness, poverty and unemployment. more »

Capital, Communities and Connectivity

11/20/2015

Craig Muska, Canopy | They say every place is unique, a complex melting pot of people, beliefs, history and politics. I’ve been thinking a lot about this “uniqueness” in recent weeks, especially given that earlier this year I launched Canopy, a new place-based investment collaborative. Today, nearly 30 Pacific Northwest leaders will convene in Roseburg, Oregon at The Ford Family Foundation headquarters for an experiential learning session focused on the rural economic development ecosystem, and how we all might help drive capital to our communities that need it most. I would invite you to tune in to the posts that follow as this work develops to watch what we hope will be a beautiful knitting together of our region. more »

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