In March, LEND approved a second microloan for SeeJaneSparkle, the year-old Main Street jewelry boutique. Second microloans typically indicate good business health and growing demand; SJS is LEND’s first-ever repeat client.
In disbursing the loan, LEND has injected over $20,000 in high-impact financing into the Evanston economy over the last 3 years.
New loan approved for therapist
Evanston-based therapist Mary Jackson received LEND's eighth microloan on Friday, April 19. The microloan will help Jackson expand the geographical range of her services, as well as her operating hours.
To our supporters:
With the new year underway, there are a number of initiatives that are ongoing at LEND. Our newest members have completed their staff training, and will begin working on the frontlines directly with our clients.
Our efforts to formalize our infrastructure are continuing from last year, and nearing completion. We have created online systems and databases that increase accessibility and ease for clients to apply for our services. These systems will also aggregate data and allow us to track metrics to measure LEND's performance.
As we look forward, we continue to build our visibility in the community and seek to make LEND as accessible as possible to entrepreneurs in need of assistance in Evanston. We will continue networking with prominent local organizations but will simultaneously undertake a grassroots outreach campaign.
We have a number of new business training and loan clients in our pipeline, and will continue striving to serve more entrepreneurs and small businesses in Evanston. We realize the impact our services have had in the community thus far, and will focus on growing our presence and reputation as a reliable economic resource in the local community.
Your support for LEND is impacting entrepreneurs everyday and fostering a brighter community. Your donations make an impact that will sustain for years to come and will affect numerous individuals.
As always, please feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org -- we would love to hear from you!
PresidentLending for Evanston and Northwestern Development (LEND)
As the last traces of summer fade away, the LEND team is excited to usher in a new year. The previous twelve months have seen the onboarding of a new team, the disbursal of $7500 in new loans, recognition from the city of Evanston, and numerous small businesses that have benefited from LEND's services. We have carefully scaled-up LEND's programs while enhancing the program's quality and have fostered close relationships with other organizations throughout the community. All this, in a year.
Widely held as a unique resource within the fabric of the Evanston community, LEND has received unprecedented interest for our services. We have been fielding referrals and inquiries throughout the summer months, and entrepreneurs are eagerly anticipating the resumption of our lending and business training programs.
However, we realize our work is nowhere near done. The stagnant economy has tightened credit and has continued to put small businesses at risk of shutting down. Entrepreneurs face daunting barriers to entry and have few allies to help them. LEND pledges to continue building our organization both internally and externally to ensure that we are here to serve local entrepreneurs for years to come. However, as the demand for microloans increases, our capital needs also grow. That is when we look to you -- our supporters.
You have probably heard it a thousand times: small businesses are the growth engine of our economy. Your contributions are helping small businesses survive the recession and are consequently building a more verdant community. As we venture into a new year, please consider reaffirming your support for LEND by making a donation. We are thrilled that you are with us as we continue to invest in local entrepreneurs.
Please feel free to contact us at email@example.com -- we would love to hear from you!
Thank you, as always, and best regards,
As we look back on another exciting year, we are delighted to share some significant milestones LEND reached in the past few months.
LEND's first borrower, Gigi Giles, completely repaid a loan she received to renovate the interior of her barbershop. Evanston Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl, Alderman Braithwaite (1st), and Alderwoman Holmes (5th) joined us to commemorate Gigi's achievement. This event also marked the successful implementation of our model, and proves that given the proper care and diligence, LEND can fundamentally transform local businesses. Links to press coverage of the event can be found below.
Our business training services have picked up tremendously this year. Five small businesses completed the eight-week training, covering a wide range of topics including bookkeeping, marketing, and improving their operations. We will resume our business training in the fall and look forward to our incoming class of passionate entrepreneurs.
As our borrowers make progress towards successful repayments, we are continuing to approve new loans. In the past two months, we disbursed three new loans to local entrepreneurs. By providing financing to a start-up jewelry boutique, fitness studio, and a handyman service, we continue to demonstrate that LEND is able to support a diverse pool of small businesses. To date, we have now made five loans totaling $12,000 in deployed loan capital.
We are thankful for your support as we continue to make vast strides as an organization. Your contributions have made our growth and success possible. This year has been crucial in demonstrating the viability of LEND’s overall model and approach towards working with risky borrowers. The coming months present a number of exciting new opportunities for expansion and enhancing our impact in the local community. We are humbled by the excitement about our work, and we are proud to be making progress towards a brighter future.
Please feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org -- we would love to hear from you.
The last few months have proved extremely busy and exciting as LEND continues to grow and evolve.
We quickly transitioned our next generation of leaders into their new roles and began pursuing our strategic goal of building sustainable client pipelines. Through extensive outreach, we were able to form relationships with a number of prominent community organizations and increase our local visibility. This outreach has translated into a number of promising and passionate clients who are looking to take their business ideas to the next level.
Last week, we began our 8-week business training session with five new clients, and have four more looking to start soon. We also are working with three prospective borrowers and are looking to give them loans, pending approval. With businesses ranging from bakeries to fitness studios, LEND members are extremely excited to begin working with these passionate entrepreneurs.
Aside from lending and business training, we also worked to initiate dialogue on campus about the scope of international microfinance by inviting Tom Coleman, founder of the Bottom Billion Fund, to speak about his initiative which aims to uplift people around the world living under $1.25 a day. Co-sponsored with NCDC, another student group on campus, the talk engaged students and asked them to consider the benefits and disadvantages of various proposed solutions to poverty. LEND hopes to continue hosting such events to increase awareness about economic disparity in the community and the ways it can be addressed.
With the scale-up of our operations underway, LEND's need for capital is constantly growing. We thank all of you for your contributions and value your support as LEND builds momentum and enters an exciting new chapter of its development.
Please feel free to contact us at email@example.com.
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