The Hoosier Social Impact Fund's mission is to empower sustainable economic development through access to affordable capital and business education.
Economic inequality is a problem that plagues communities worldwide. A gap exists between clients seeking capital and providers of that capital. Capital providers cannot ensure that this capital will be repaid and seek other avenues to maximize their profits, creating financial gaps for individuals and small businesses. From a client perspective, many individuals lack basic information about how to access capital, build up credit, and grow a thriving and sustainable business.
In January 2014, two faculty members at the Kelley School of Business, the co-directors of the Kelley Institute for Social Impact, four graduate students, and 23 undergraduate students embarked on an experimental course at IU's Kelley School of Business entitled Kelley LEADS (Law, Ethics, And Decision-making Strategies). The course goal was to plan, create, and begin operating a community development financial institution (CDFI) to promote sustainable economic development in local communities.
The Hoosier Social Impact Fund (HSIF) is the result of those efforts. HSIF is a non-profit community loan fund that seeks to promote sustainable economic development by providing access to business capital and providing business education, training, and consulting services to underserved populations that do not have access to traditional sources of capital or business support.
By providing access to capital coupled with business education, training, and consulting, HSIF seeks to eliminate the gaps in the system and work with underserved populations. HSIF partners with individual and organizational donors; local, regional, state and national organizations; and its own clients to further its mission.
HSIF also has an educational mission to provide IU students, faculty, staff, and alumni with an opportunity to gain hands-on education and real-world experience by applying their business education and training to manage all aspects of HSIF's operations; craft and implement effective financial, managerial, marketing, accounting, lending, and other business policies and practices; and work with clients to help them build sustainable businesses that contribute to the growth of prosperous and thriving communities. In the process, HSIF members develop valuable professional skills, grow as individuals, and become engaged and leading members of their communities.