Community & Economic Development

All of our grant making, low-interest lending, convening and knowledge creation has one major goal: to increase economic opportunity among Louisiana’s most vulnerable communities. In our early days, this goal was focused on south Louisiana, in the areas hardest hit by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. As our mission shifted from recovery to include building resilience, Foundation for Louisiana has begun to expand its work beyond New Orleans and the Gulf Coast into Shreveport, the Delta region, Lake Charles and Lafayette. In all cases, we steer investments to communities that have fallen behind in recovery along with those that have suffered historic disinvestment long before the disasters of 2005.

The Community Investment Fund (formerly known as Program-Related Investments) has been a critical piece in supplying communities with the resources to launch large development projects that bring much-needed resources back into devastated areas. Since 2008, Foundation for Louisiana has provided approximately $3.6 million in loans to projects and initiatives such as affordable housing units, healthy food access hubs in underserved communities and co-working, and place-based initiatives where the cultural economy can thrive. Our policy working groups also strive to stimulate economic development at the grassroots level.

Projects We Support

A New Type of Housing Plan for New Orleans

Greater New Orleans Housing Alliance (GNOHA) is coordinating a large-scale effort to develop a ten-year strategy for housing New Orleans' current and future residents

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Rising Out of Homelessness

Helping people rise out of homelessness is one of the toughest challenges in the affordable housing arena. Every story of homelessness is heartbreaking; those of homeless veterans are especially tough.

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Unity of New Orleans is redeveloping this building into 109 units of affordable housing

Fighting Blight in New Orleans Neighborhoods

Broadmoor Improvement Association, Miller Urban Consulting and "New Zion" City Preservation Association, Inc. (NZCPA) teamed up to develop strategies for fighting blight in small communities.

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Zion City resident reviews a copy of the blight organizing toolkit

LA SAFE launches series of parish-wide public meetings for coastal parish residents

The public meetings, coordinated by LA SAFE and partners including Foundation for Louisiana, help give coastal residents a broad and often historical overview of how the coastline has come to suffer from the kind of erosion that's threatening the economic, cultural and social fabrics of diverse communities. But then as the meetings continue, residents learn how they can become participants and leaders in their own future as they learn to recognize and adapt to challenges by recognizing opportunities.