Elevating Impact – St. Benedict Center

Early childhood development is essential to the growth of any community. In 2015, West Louisville was at risk of losing one of its longstanding, vital resources, the St. Benedict Center for Early Childhood Education. This nonprofit organization, which had provided high-quality childcare in West Louisville’s California neighborhood for many years, was failing due to declining enrollment and an urgent need for staffing and building repairs. It had recently been acquired by New Directions Housing Corporation, which quickly recognized the immediate need for a cash investment in order for the center to succeed.

Through the Community Foundation of Louisville’s Impact Capital loan program, New Directions solicited and received a $100,000 loan. This loan provided the opportunity to resolve long-deferred maintenance projects, and to invest in classroom and playground materials, allowing St. Benedict to stabilize operations and expand its care for children in the community.

Within six years the loan has been fully repaid, once again strengthening St. Benedict’s position as an integral part of the community, and tripling its enrollment. Nearly 100 predominately Black children now benefit from Head Start services and kindergarten readiness. St. Benedict Center not only improves the lives of the children they serve, but their work impacts entire families by assisting parents with pursuing their own educational goals as well as job search and career development.

“Without the capital loan from the Community Foundation of Louisville, the investments that led to the recovery and continued growth of St. Benedict would not have been possible, leaving few options for children most in need of early childhood educational services,” stated Felicia Alfred, Director of St. Benedict Center for Early Childhood Education.

The Community Foundation of Louisville’s Impact Capital loan program has been making loans that are invested in high-impact projects to create positive social impact alongside financial returns since 2014. To learn more about the program or to make an impact through your investment, visit https://www.cflouisville.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/Impact-Capital-Overview.pdf.