Chicanos Por La Causa received $5 million from Wells Fargo to help enhance relief programs in Arizona for small businesses that continue experiencing hardship related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Prestamos CDFI, a division of Chicanos Por La Causa, will be responsible for using the awarded funds from Wells Fargo’s Open for Business Fund to address the lack of access to affordable capital for small businesses.
“These funds will help us provide low-interest loans to small businesses struggling through the pandemic in combination with free consulting services, which makes a significant difference for our clients,” CPLC president & CEO David Adame stated in a news release. “Almost a year into this pandemic, we understand the multiple challenges small business owners are facing to keep their doors open, create local jobs and, in many cases, offer a lifeline to communities in need across the southwestern United States. We are committed to investing in them on the road to recovery.”
The capital will support predominantly racially and ethnically diverse small businesses targeting Maricopa and Pima counties.
Wells Fargo launched the Open for Business Fund in 2020 as an approximately $400 million small business recovery effort across the U.S. to help entrepreneurs hardest hit by COVID-19 recover and rebuild. To date, the Open for Business Fund has deployed more than $84 million in philanthropic capital to Community Development Financial Institutions, which has helped an estimated 16,000 struggling small businesses and helped keep in place 50,000 small business jobs.
Chicanos Por La Causa (cplc.org) was founded in 1969 to confront discrimination against Mexican-American students in Phoenix as part of the larger movement led by Cesar Chavez, Dolores Huerta, and others. Its programs work to help individuals and families achieve self-sufficiency by providing accessible healthcare; affordable housing; a quality education; access to meaningful work; and political representation to impact almost 380,000 lives annually in Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico and Texas.