Rework to include: focus on access to capital, remove redundancies and improve flow, other examples of loans, connecting people to other resources needed, supporting self-identified needs
To help recently released individuals overcome financial barriers and successfully resettle in the communities to which they return, we have established The Fountain Fund. The Fountain Fund provides low-interest loans to formerly incarcerated people with viable employment prospects. The Fund provides loans to qualified formerly incarcerated individuals at a very low interest rate. For example, loan recipients may use the funds to:
- repay court-imposed fees, costs, restitution or other obligations, or pay back child support,
- purchase specialized equipment necessary for particular jobs, or
- start small businesses.
To be considered for a loan, applicants mustshow: (1) a record of past incarceration; (2) current or future gainful employment; (3) and a potential elevation in their personal circumstances, as a result of the loan. The Fountain Fund does not discriminate based on type of conviction or length of incarceration. We typically offer our loans for a 3-year term at a low 5.0% interest rate. We have an incentive for ACH participation (3.0% interest rate) to create efficiencies with our collections process.
Each recipient signs a loan agreement which obligates him or her to repay the loan and a minimal amount of interest over a fixed period of time. Repaid principal and interest is reinvested in the Fund, which increases capacity to serve more individuals.
Like any lender, the Fund evaluates each applicant for repayment potential and likelihood of success. Instead of relying on a traditional credit score, the Fund individually evaluates the applicant’s “elevation factor”.