The CFICS Innovation Fund provides start-up money for innovative nonprofits (California only) in the form of loans of up to $5,000.

As the founder of a nonprofit, I know first hand how difficult, demanding, and expensive it can be to launch a nonprofit. There are many costs associated with the start-up process, which can include application fees, preparation fees, and legal and tax consultation fees. Amongst the many obstacles, the costs of filing required documentation and paying for professional services may present itself as one of the greatest barriers that an entity may face while seeking to become a permanently established nonprofit.

The inspiration to start the Innovation Fund came after attending a movie premier fundraiser for a local nonprofit, The HERS Project. HERS is a nonprofit committed to providing emergency overnight residential shelter to homeless women in the Sacramento region. The proceeds earned from its fundraiser helped to offset the start-up cost for HERS, but unfortunately were not enough. HERS is one of several innovative nonprofits I have spoken with who have expressed the challenge of becoming fully established due to monetary constraints. HERS is the first recipient of an Innovation Loan with donations exceeding $5,000 raised from this site in less than three days. CFICS is now actively raising $25,000 to fund other innovative nonprofit ideas.

True to its name and mission, CFICS is pleased to create a vehicle through which innovative organizations can obtain start-up monies to help them launch efforts that have broad community impact.

-Shelia Duruisseau-Sidqe

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