A small business lending program has been launched to help African American and minority businesses create jobs and build community wealth. With a focus on bringing capital to underserved groups, the National Urban League’s Urban Empowerment Fund, Morgan Stanley, National Development Council, and Cuyahoga County have come together to offer the Capital Access Fund of Greater Cleveland (CAF).
CAF is a three-year program that provides minority business owners access to capital, offering 50 loans totaling $8 million, as well as pre- and post-loan counseling, to ensure the success of those small business borrowers. With a goal of creating or maintaining a minimum of 300 jobs within those three years, CAF already has completed eight loans, totaling $1.4 million and helping to create or maintain 70 local jobs.
“The level of interest we already have confirms what we already knew—there is a gap in the access to capital for minority businesses, and we should not gloss over that,” said Marc H. M.