A couple responds to the challenge
Cotton Cleveland and John Garvey are loyal supporters of the Community Loan Fund, having made an investment and annual donations since 1993.
“Both of us really value the idea of giving people an opportunity to find independence, believing in the value of ownership and community, and caring about the bigger picture and not just your own picture,” says John. “We’ve both been very supportive of the concept and how you’ve handled that over the years.”
So, it was little surprise when, in early April, they were among the first donors to our Borrower Stabilization Fund.
This is absolutely a rock-solid organization. You couldn’t be turning your money over to anybody better and more qualified. It’s not all ‘Oh, we’re gonna go out and help these nice people.’ You have to really be sophisticated, buttoned down, and knowledgeable about the business end.
The Borrower Stabilization Fund was our response to the economic disruption caused by the COVID-19 crisis. We knew the coming months weren’t going to be business as usual and that many of our borrowers would need higher levels of patience and/or technical assistance to keep their homes or businesses.
Cotton said she was eager to help. “This is a time when everyone is challenged, but people with lower incomes are heavily challenged. We think it’s going to go on for a while because this economy is not going to get better right away.”
Both connect with the Community Loan Fund’s work on personal and professional levels.
John, an attorney, has seen in his pro bono cases people struggling so mightily just to make ends meet that they’d never consider owning a home a possibility. Helping people with low incomes buy homes, and then become cooperative co-owners and members of the communities they live in, is, for John, a very compelling mission.
As a person who has led and consulted with for-profit and nonprofit ventures, what appeals to Cotton is not just what the Community Loan Fund does, but how it does it.
“This is absolutely a rock-solid organization. You couldn’t be turning your money over to anybody better and more qualified,” she says. “It’s not all ‘Oh, we’re gonna go out and help these nice people.’ You have to really be sophisticated, buttoned down, and knowledgeable about the business end.”
“As a businesswoman, I’m incredibly appreciative of that.”
This article was first published in the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund’s 2020 annual report.