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Certification

The CDFI designation opens the door for funding opportunities that make it possible to better serve those in your communities.

Our certification services involve:
 

  • Analysis of your mission, policies and lending to determine if you meet the standards to be certified.

  • Recommendations on how to close any gaps to meet required standards.

  • Application development and submission – including data collection, our proprietary research, and submission of your application.

We've won $945 million in grants and funding for our CDFIs in the past fifteen years - funding that changes the lives of their members and communities.

Grants

What makes our CDFI grant writing so effective? CDFI grant applications are business plans. Our team of CFOs, CEOs, product designers, compliance, policy, and operations experts collaborate on every application. Our work can be used beyond the grants: 

  • Product and policy enhancement recommendations

  • Impact calculations for your annual report

  • Business development with new partners

With the benefits of CDFI programs come the responsibility of compliance. Our compliance services include grant compliance reporting and annual certification reporting.

Compliance

The Annual Certification Report (ACR) shows how your credit union is lending to its Target Market. We review and recalculate any changed service delivery to your Target Market, review your accountability and calculate your financial products and development services. Our grant reporting includes calculating and reporting your progress toward the performance goals of your award, for the entire multi-year reporting period.


We also offer a quarterly lending analysis of all CDFI-related lending activity, that can provide peace of mind that your credit union’s accountability and lending goals are being met or give you time to make adjustments to your strategies.

Our CDFI Credit Union Experts Handle: 

Recertification

The CDFI Fund’s new certification standards means that EVERY existing CDFI must recertify by December 20, 2024 to maintain its certification. This is a much more complex process than the Annual Certification Report.

Our recertification services are comprehensive; we will identify areas in your lending, policies or mission that could prevent your credit union retaining its CDFI status.

Don’t delay this process; you must have a board-approved Community Development Mission Statement in place for at least six months before your recertification is submitted. Our services cover this, along with comprehensive analysis, a recommendation report, and application development and submission. Please contact us for a proposal or to answer any questions about CDFI recertification.

Our Services

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CDFI

Work with the CDFI credit union experts - even if you aren't a CDFI (yet).
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Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) are certified by the US Department of the Treasury as serving low-income communities and operating with a goal of expanding economic opportunity by providing access to financial products and services for local residents and businesses.

 

CDFIs work to improve their communities by providing access to basic financial services, affordable credit and investment capital. The CDFI designation opens the door for funding opportunities that make it possible to better serve those in your communities that need it most, and for financial institutions to excel—both operationally and financially.

US Treasury CDFI Seal

What's a CDFI?

April, 2024

All Things CDFI

We cover all the latest info- recertification, grants and the Greenhouse Gas Reduction awards -what your credit union should be doing now to prepare, and what to look forward to in the coming months.

Fair Lending

April, 2024

A Practical Discussion About Fair Lending

Joe Brancucci tackles the hot-button topic of fair lending from a practical perspective. In this webinar, he provides valuable advice and best practices to help your credit union live its cooperative principles and serve your community.

Target Market Lending

April, 2024

Increasing Your Target Market Lending Webinar

Looking to increase your CDFI lending in 2024 to meet compliance goals in 2025? Providing your Target Market with financial products and services is not only key to your mission, it's a requirement for retaining your CDFI status. Five of our own CDFI Lending experts share best practices and advice in this lively panel discussion.

January, 2024

Certification Next Steps Webinar

Your credit union can and should keep its CDFI certification! The new certification rules from the CDFI Fund have brought changes, but they are both manageable and flexible – and well worth it. This webinar is all about assessing how your credit union moves forward as a CDFI.

The New CDFI Certification Webinar graphic

December, 2023

The New CDFI Certification Application Webinar

The new CDFI certification has been released, and all current CDFIs will need to re-certify under the new standards by December 2024. This webinar explains what the new certification rules mean and how CU Strategic Planning is cutting through the red tape to keep all credit unions certified.

Buckeye State CU case study graphic

November, 2023

Case Study

Nearly 80% of Buckeye's activities are directed to low-income members in northeastern Ohio. CEO Michael Abernathy says of the $136.5 million credit union, "We take risks on people every other financial institution has left behind." Since becoming a CDFI in 2017, Buckeye has served its membership in part using the nearly $7.5 million in grant funding earned with our assistance.

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May, 2023

Case Study

With our help, New Orleans Firemen’s FCU credit union has received six awards totaling more than $15.5 million from the Community Development Financial Institution Fund since 2019. It leverages these CDFI awards to “aggressively serve designated low-income areas,” in the words of CEO Judy DeLucca. 

Learn More

Contact us to set up a meeting and learn more about our CDFI services.

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