Social Finance

Social Finance

Social finance involves the provision of repayable loan finance at affordable rates to community-based projects and local development initia

Social Finance

Social finance involves the provision of repayable loan finance at affordable rates to community-based projects and local development initiatives (including individual and community micro-enterprise), which yield a social and financial return.

Who Provides it?

The Social Finance Foundation (SFF) was launched in 2007 with seed capital funding of €25 million provided by the banking sector through its representative body, Banking & Payments Federation Ireland (BPFI). Participating financial institutions approved a loan agreement with SFF, through which they would make €72 million available in loans over the next 12 years at competitive interest rates appropriate for social finance.

SFF had approved more than €28 million in loans for community-based projects and micro-enterprises by the end of 2010.

How Does it Work?

The SFF uses a wholesale finance model. This means that it does not lend directly to social finance projects.  Instead, it provide wholesale lending to social lending organisations (SLOs).  These lenders in turn receive and assess applications from borrowers for social finance. The SLOs aso decide the terms and conditions of the loans, including the interest rate.

How to Apply?

For more details about the SFF, the SLOs that provide the loans and how to apply, please visit the SFF website here.