Our Model

How LISC Works

Connecting communities with resources

In 1979, when the Ford Foundation first conceived of LISC, it envisioned an “intermediary”—a smart and savvy non-profit that would connect hard-to-tap public and private resources with hard-to-reach communities struggling to revive. 

The premise was as simple then as it is now: government, foundations and for-profit companies have the capital; residents and local institutions understand the need; and LISC bridges the gap by offering the relationships and expertise to help community organizations attract the kinds of resources that allow them do their best work. While the components of our programming continue to change and evolve, for more than 35 years, our role and our mission have remained the same.

We receive our funding from banks, corporations, foundations and government agencies. We, in turn, use that funding to provide financing (loans, grants and equity) and technical and management assistance to local partners and developers. Through our 31 local offices, a rural program that reaches nearly 1,400 counties in 44 states, and LISC-founded affiliates and entities, we work with a vast network of community-based partners to make investments in housing, businesses, jobseducation, safety and health

 

We are on the ground

LISC is in more places than any other community development organization. We have staff, expertise and relationships in 31 local offices.

We listen

LISC engages local leaders and neighbors to plan, set goals and measure progress. We bring local issues to state and national policy leaders.

We innovate

LISC tests ground-breaking ideas locally and adapts them nationally for places as diverse as the Mississippi Delta and San Francisco Bay.

We leverage 

LISC invests in distressed neighborhoods for maximum impact. Every dollar we invest attracts another $3 in private capital. 

We see the big picture

LISC’s approach is comprehensive. We work on housing, businesses, jobs, education, health and safety in the same place at the same time.

We persevere

Markets go up and down, political winds shift, fads come and go. But LISC stays the course. 

WE HAVE AN IMPACT

Our communities are better places to live, more people have jobs and incomes rise. See our results.