Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta’s GoATL Fund Invests $1.5M in Reinvestment Fund
Friday, February 7th, 2020
GoATL Fund (GoATL), an impact investment fund launched by the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta, announced $1.5 million in two investments to Reinvestment Fund. The first investment, $1 million, will expand Reinvestment Fund’s existing GoATL investment supporting a diverse portfolio of impactful projects throughout metro Atlanta. The second investment of $500,000 will target support to early childhood education (ECE) projects across the region. These investments align with the Community Foundation’s efforts to build equity of opportunity across the metro Atlanta region for 2020 and beyond, specifically economic and racial equity.
GoATL’s investment will help Reinvestment Fund expand its lending to support social outcomes in education, job creation and housing. A portion of the investment is also supporting a new pilot program aimed at expanding the availability of high-quality early childhood education for children from underserved communities in metro Atlanta.
“Reinvestment Fund is a valued partner for GoATL and our community because of their diverse range of capital and services offered,” said Mark Crosswell, managing director, social impact strategy at Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta. “We are especially excited to grow our relationship with them through this latest strategic investment in early childhood education, an area of great need throughout the region.”
The investment in Reinvestment Fund’s regional ECE strategy is being developed in partnership with GEEARS: Georgia Early Education Alliance for Ready Students. The strategy builds on prior work by the partners to develop ATL ACCESS MAP, which depicts childcare supply and demand and identifies opportunities to increase high-quality childcare where it is needed most. That analysis informed a targeted regional investment strategy, which includes the Fund for Quality – ATL, a recommendation of the Promise All Atlanta Children Thrive (PAACT). PAACT’s mission is to create a citywide alliance focused on improving outcomes for children ages birth to 5 years old who grow up in the City of Atlanta.
The Fund for Quality – ATL is expected to be a $5 million fund that will provide technical assistance and financing to childcare operators located in the Atlanta Public Schools catchment. Reinvestment Fund has thus far raised $1.5 million from philanthropic initiatives, including the United Way of Greater Atlanta/Joseph B. Whitehead Foundation and GoATL, for the program and is seeking to raise additional grant funds. The program will augment existing initiatives to expand quality early childhood education by supporting quality improvement and expansion activity, prioritizing programs that serve infants and toddlers in the Washington and Douglass clusters.
This work replicates Reinvestment Fund’s successful Fund for Quality (FFQ) model in Philadelphia. Capitalized with nearly $23 million in grants and $2.6 million in loan funds, and operating since 2014, FFQ has worked with high-quality ECE operators across Philadelphia to create over 2,500 seats for primarily low-income children. Additionally, over 150 jobs have been created through expansion projects to date. Also informing the Atlanta program is our Early Learning Quality Fund (ELQF) program in Washington, D.C., a $4+ million fund for early learning programs that includes training and technical assistance on facility related topics such as room layout, learning materials, furnishings, and health and safety. Funds for facility improvements for both family-based childcare operators and center-based programs are also available.
“We are excited to continue to partner with GoATL to build stronger and more equitable communities in Atlanta,” said Christina Szczepanski, managing director for the Southeast with Reinvestment Fund. “We hope that this inspires more local investors to partner with us to support impactful projects that expand opportunities for all Atlantans to succeed.”
Reinvestment Fund has invested over $40 million throughout greater Atlanta, creating or preserving 200 early childhood education slots, supporting over 1,000 jobs and creating or preserving nearly 400 housing units. GoATL’s investment provides Reinvestment Fund with both cost-effective capital as well as a connection to a valuable local partner with deep roots in the community.