Foundation donates $2.5 mil. for low-income loans

Non-profit credit union will use funds to provide reasonable rates loans in Porterville area


FRESNO – A $2.5 million donation from a Valleywide foundation will help a local non-profit lender help hundreds of low income people in disadvantaged communities obtain loans at reasonable rates.

On Nov. 7, the Central Valley Community Foundation and its supporting organization, the Lyles Foundation, deposited over $2.5 million in cash into yield-bearing money market accounts at Self-Help Federal Credit Union (SHFCU).

These deposits will enable SHFCU branches in southeast Fresno and Porterville to expand lending at reasonable rates to disadvantaged communities in the central San Joaquin Valley. Based on SHFCU’s average loan sizes, this investment will provide enough capital to finance the equivalent of 19 affordable mortgages, 1,300 personal loans, 217 responsible car loans, or 3,642 credit-builder loans to a diversity of borrowers.

“We are invested in solutions that build stronger communities and provide options that will help promote financial security,” said Ashley Swearengin, President and CEO of the Central Valley Community Foundation. “We are very excited for this partnership, and we know this will create new economic opportunities for residents in Fresno and Porterville.”

These funds will expand SHFCU’s already impressive impact in the central San Joaquin Valley, where they have financed nearly 1,000 consumer and home loans, totaling $31.87 million in lending activity in Fresno, and nearly 2,000 consumer and home loans, totaling $33 million in lending activity in Porterville. Also, in just two short years, SHFCU’s Fresno Branch has built an active membership of 1,277 members with over $8 million in deposits.

“We are committed to providing safe and affordable opportunities for low-income families,” said Joe Duran, Executive Vice President of SHFCU. “We believe if all people have access to services for responsible savings, loans, and transactions, then not only can we help improve the financial security of their families, but we can also increase the opportunities in our communities.”

Self-Help Federal Credit Union was chartered in 2008 and is part of the Self-Help family of nonprofit organizations with a single mission: To create and protect ownership and economic opportunity for all, especially people of color, women, rural residents, and low-wealth families and communities.

The Central Valley Community Foundation has been a trusted partner in philanthropy in the Central Valley for more than 50 years. Our mission is to cultivate smart philanthropy, lead, and invest in solutions that build stronger communities.

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