Impact Investing at the Jessie Ball duPont Fund

At the Jessie Ball duPont Fund, we look for ways to make all of our assets work toward our vision of building communities in which everyone feels a sense of belonging. That commitment extends to the ways we manage our investments, and the types of investments we seek. In addition to satisfying the legal and financial requirements necessary for us to accomplish our work in perpetuity, the Fund engages in impact investing – identifying investments designed to yield positive social, economic and environmental outcomes together with a financial return.

Our Impact Investing Program is designed to:

  • Align the Fund’s endowed assets to our mission and values;
  • Catalyze innovative solutions and services that benefit humans and the environment; and
  • Create new sources of investment capital for communities and encourage others to leverage their assets to more directly impact the communities they serve.

Through our Impact Investing Program, we have designated a portion of our investment portfolio to consider both mission-related investments, which are expected to generate a market rate return, and program-related investments, which are designed to achieve a below market-rate return. We consider funding loans, investments in CDFIs or other intermediaries, equity investments, asset investments in real estate or environmental conservation projects, guarantees and other types of financing that encourage other entities to contribute funds and resources.

For example, the Fund recently became the only southeastern foundation to contribute to a first-of-its-kind Community Investment Guarantee Pool. The Pool will leverage $33 million in commitments from major funders to generate more than $150 million in community benefits, by guaranteeing loans for small businesses, climate change strategies and affordable housing initiatives.

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