Starbucks Coffee Company and Opportunity Finance Network (OFN) recently announced that the Create Jobs for USA Fund has surpassed $1 million in donations within the first two weeks of the program’s November 1st launch.
To date, $6 million has been contributed to the Create Jobs for USA Fund, which includes a $5 million donation from the Starbucks Foundation to seed this initiative. Every $5 donation can lead to approximately $35 in loans to small businesses, with community lenders issuing $30 in financing, on average, for each $5 donation through their respective financing sources. As a result, the more than $6 million in donations to date may create as much as $42 million in small business loans.
“It’s inspiring to see Americans coming together to play a role in helping create and sustain jobs,” said Starbucks chairman, president and ceo Howard Schultz. “Since launching this initiative less than two weeks ago, concerned citizens are already making a difference in helping get Americans back to work. We are optimistic that this initial response will continue through the holidays and into 2012.”
Launched on Nov. 1, the Create Jobs for USA Fund allows concerned citizens to help create and sustain jobs in America. OFN, a nationwide network of 180 Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), teamed up with Starbucks to oversee the fund and provide financing to community businesses in underserved markets.
One hundred percent of contributions will be pooled and awarded as small business loans to help create and sustain jobs in underserved communities. Donations are being accepted online at Create Jobs for USA official website and at nearly 7,000 U.S. company-operated Starbucks stores.
Donors who contribute $5 or more will receive a red, white, and blue wristband with the message “Indivisible.” The wristbands are individually handmade in the U.S.A. and all component materials are manufactured by U.S. suppliers, so the effort is also helping support American manufacturing jobs. The wristband is designed to serve as a symbol of Americans uniting to help create jobs. More than 200,000 wristbands have been distributed to donors since November 1st.
“We’re pleased to see that this initiative has tapped into the American spirit of people helping one another,” said Opportunity Finance Network president and ceo Mark Pinsky, from the OFN 27th Annual Conference in Minneapolis. “CDFIs have always served low-income, low-wealth, and disadvantaged communities, and with these generous donations, CDFIs can expand their reach to make a bigger difference—and create more jobs—in communities across the U.S.”
Currently, 28 OFN Member CDFIs around the country have already received grants from the Create Jobs for USA Fund. OFN anticipates these CDFIs will begin making loans by the end of November to small business owners who are committed to creating and sustaining jobs. Based on conservative forecasting models developed by OFN with input from independent economists, one new job will be created or retained for approximately every $21,000 in loans – or approximately every $3,000 in donations. Small business owners interested in learning more or applying for a loan should visit this site.