The Federal Home Loan Bank of Chicago (FHLBC) has awarded CAP Services a $35,000 grant to help CAP Services increase the capacity of its lending programs.
The award will allow CAP and its lending arm, Community Assets for People (CAfP), to implement process improvement recommendations from a previously completed assessment, prepare for third-party financial rating through Aeris, and convert CAfP to a 501(c)(3) allowing it to expand the types of capital investments and loans it receives.

“We are excited to dig into these projects and are grateful to the Federal Home Loan Bank of Chicago for recognizing the importance of capacity-building work,” said Laura West, CAP’s Business Development vice president. “These efforts will help us increase the amount of low-cost capital we are able to make available to underserved populations in central and eastern Wisconsin.”

The award is part of $250,000 FHLBC granted through its new Community First® Capacity-Building Grant Program to six nonprofit lending institutions in Illinois and Wisconsin.

“With these inaugural Community First Capacity-Building Grants, we are investing in the strength of community development lending organizations,” said Suzi Thackston, FHLBC Community Investment Officer. “We look forward to the social return on these investments through the expansion of loan programs and increased organizational capacity.”

The FHLBC launched the program earlier this year to support the growth of nonprofit lending institutions promoting affordable housing and economic development in Illinois and Wisconsin. Evaluations were based on each organization’s mission, strength, strategy to increase community development lending within Illinois and Wisconsin, and proposed uses for the grant funds.

Through its member financial institutions, the FHLBC provides grants to help qualifying nonprofit community development loan funds, community development financial institutions, and community development corporations build their financial, operational, and human capital. CAP partnered with BMO Harris Bank, N.A. in the Community First Capacity-Building Grant Program application process.

To learn more about the FHLBC and its full range of Community Investment programs, visit or @FHLBC.