Disadvantaged Entrepreneurs find American Dream in Create Jobs for USA

By: Mark Pinsky - Jun 18, 2013
Source: Mastercard

When the owner of Pippa’s Real Tea, in Port Townsend, WA, couldn’t secure bank financing to open her tea shop, she almost gave up.

This is not an uncommon tale for many first-time entrepreneurs who, for any number of reasons, are unable to access traditional financing from their local bank. Fortunately for Pippa she heard about Craft3, a Create Jobs for USA Awardee. A loan from Craft3 enabled her to open the store, creating 14 jobs for her community.

When people on the path to realizing the American dream have access to capital, they can be entrepreneurs, open businesses, create jobs, and transform lives. But many individuals and communities—often in low-income areas—lack access to capital, even when their business ideas are good.

Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) fill this gap.  They bring affordable products and services to communities and individuals, like Pippa, who have been left out of the financial mainstream. The benefits: sound financial returns and real change.

Create Jobs for USA has leveraged the power of these community lenders to help solve our nation’s jobs crisis. Started by Starbucks and Opportunity Finance Network, and later joined by partners, including MasterCard, Create Jobs for USA enables leading companies and individual citizens to create jobs by supporting CDFIs. Through individual and corporate donations, Create Jobs for USA has raised more than $15 million. CDFIs have leveraged this into $105 million in financing for community businesses, which created or retained 5,000 U.S. jobs.

MasterCard helps people like Pippa overcome financial barriers. Its generous support of Create Jobs for USA underscores the company’s commitment to offering basic financial tools and services in underbanked or unbanked communities and helping small businesses and entrepreneurs succeed. By investing in Create Jobs for USA, MasterCard celebrates innovative solutions for pressing economic problems and encourages visionary approaches to making the American dream accessible for all.

After all, it takes money to make money.