Hitting the Road

Last year, we looked at our success stories a little differently. We didn’t just celebrate them – they inspired the route we chose to travel and our next destination.

Nothing is more exciting than beginning a fully fueled journey with a defined path ahead of you. Of course, obstacles pop up; whether it’s a flat tire, bad weather, or a closed road, you must expect the unexpected. For us at VCCSE, we feel prepared to overcome impediments because we have over 16 years of experience and a robust network to guide our way. We feel confident in our people, our partners, and our plan. 

Our Strategic Plan

Defining the Route

Upon completion of our DEI Strategic Plan, we felt ready and even more motivated to tackle our FY 2023-25 corporate strategic plan.

Like the DEI plan, this project was led by a cross-departmental steering committee and guided by our trusted partners at Wellspring Consulting. At the outset, we arrived at five questions we sought to answer through this exercise: 

  • What should our mission and vision be?  
  • How do we ensure each of our programs aligns with each other and with our revised mission and vision?  
  • How do we have a greater impact on the communities we seek to serve and the field we aim to advance?  
  • How can we advance diversity, equity, and inclusion in all we do?  
  • How will our resources and team evolve to support this strategic direction? 

Through thoughtful conversations with our partners, staff, and board members, and supported by Wellspring’s thorough research of our peers and industry, we learned more about our place in the community development movement. We gained a clearer picture of our assets, lessons learned, and the strength of our network.

Our refreshed mission and vision gave us a renewed sense of direction and purpose. Most importantly, the clarity didn’t just come to what we’re capable of in our current state – we started to see what was possible with growth. 

Our mission: We create access to capital by developing community partnerships and innovative tools that tackle systemic challenges and advance promising opportunities. Our vision: All people and places have the capital and ecosystem partners needed to realize prosperous futures.

At VCCSE, we’ve always embraced the spirit of innovation in all that we do. Our new strategic plan reflects a commitment to bringing the most value possible as a community partner. Here are some of our key takeaways and initiatives: 

  • We want to work in communities where our guidance is welcomed. As we engage in new places, we’ll nurture existing partnerships and build new ones across multiple sectors to gain the trust of communities. 
  • We want to work in communities where the capital system is not working for all. To support our prioritization of equitable access to capital and resources, we’ll use metrics like the CDFI Investment Area Criteria to focus our activity in our service areas.  
  • We want to address the most pressing community-identified opportunities. We hope to work with communities with shared visions for the future or a desire to partner with us to clearly define those visions. 
  • We want to work through community-embedded organizations. We’re looking for partner organizations that can help build a pipeline of community-informed opportunities. 
  • We want to be catalytic. We strive to rally like-minded institutions or businesses that have demonstrated their commitment to or interest in unlocking their capital for their communities. 
  • We want to support community partners that are committed to equity and inclusion. Our partners will be values-aligned and actively employ the practices of DEI in a way that is readily observable in their engagement with communities. 

When we arrive in your community on the road toward equity, we’re looking to you for guidance on how to be the most helpful partner. If you’re a mission-driven investor or institution, we want to explore the ways our unique organization can help you align your investments and your values. If you’re a small business owner or nonprofit leader, we’re going to ask about your vision and community ecosystem.

Regardless of your role in your community, we invite you to learn more about all the ways VCCSE supports more equitable economies and places. You’ll learn more about our products and services on the next page. 


Removing Roadblocks Together

Read more about some of the work that inspired our strategic direction below. None of this would be possible without our amazing partners and the inspiring visions of the communities we serve.

Featured Story

Paving the Way

At VCCSE, we believe that being a community-driven organization comes with a responsibility to contribute expertise and experience to the greater cause.

Sometimes we call it “field building” or “thought leadership,” but regardless of the label, the goal is the same. We want to share and learn about ideas and practices that are having an impact, and we want to elevate the aspirations and advancements that will get all of us further down the road toward equity.

View Full Story
Amir VP Harris

Our Impact

By the Numbers

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"There's no point where we say there are officially no longer inequities in our communities. This work is never done -- it is a continuous journey we're on."

Amir Kirkwood, President & CEO, VCC Social Enterprises

Let’s do more, together.

There are many ways to partner with VCC Social Enterprises on the road toward equity. Are you our next visionary collaborator?  

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