The Francis Fund for Southeastern CT is a vehicle for social investing and lending to support and promote a sustainable, just, regional economy in Southeastern CT.
The Francis Fund is a partnership of St. Francis House and Equity Trust, Inc. a national organization based in Amherst, MA dedicated to promoting equity by changing the way people think about and hold property. St. Francis House provides local review of and support for Francis Fund loan projects while Equity Trust provides administrative and fiduciary oversight. Together, SFH and ETI have defined the Fund’s mission and are guiding its ongoing evolution.
The on-the-ground work of the Francis Fund—identifying projects and assessing them for mission fit—is supported by an Advisory Committee made up of local residents who share themselves according to their talents, knowledge, and networks, as well as participate in ongoing learning about sustainable economic development.
The Francis Fund directs its funds to non-profit and for profit enterprises according to the following criteria:
- Support cooperative efforts and business models that facilitate shared ownership and increased collaboration
- Support the diversification of the local economy to more productive non-violent activities
- Increase local resiliency and self-reliance by building capacity to produce basic needs regionally for local consumption, particularly with farming
- Support the responsible and innovative use of natural and manufactured capital
- Support the creation of equity and opportunity by groups historically marginalized and economically disenfranchised