News & Events

First Step Staffing Comes to Philadelphia

First Step Staffing from Atlanta has piloted a simple but effective model to provide a first step back into employment for homeless and returning citizens in Atlanta where they serve 1000 individuals per day.  In 2018 they brought that model to Philadelphia. With the participation of multiple parties, the CDFI community, homeless service providers and social investment community, helped make this occur. First Step Staffing (FSS) acquired a local labor staffing agency in Philadelphia to operate a second location of their staffing business (after Atlanta) with more on the way. FSS now controls about 600 jobs per day in Philadelphia where they will be placing the homeless clients or returning citizens, providing transportation to the sites and ensuring that they have the supports they need to stay in the job. FSS believes that earning a wage is the first step to providing a path back into society. Marcus Reinvestment Strategies was pleased to work with 2 of our clients to make this happen. MRS underwrote the senior financing for LISC's participation of $1.2 million in the senior financing. MRS also worked with Impact Loan Fund to commit $75,000 of subordinate, social investment capital, to help create the equity-like cushion needed for the project. 

SHARE Food Program Secures a $1 million RACP Commitment

The SHARE food program is led by Steveanna Wynn, the Philadelphia Inquirer's Citizen of the year in 2012. The organization, with a limited staff but hordes of volunteers, distributed more than 26 million pounds of food for the hungry out of their more than 100,000 sq. ft. warehouse and distribution center in North Philadelphia. We worked with SHARE to prepare their RACP application to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and with their extraordinary efforts and the recognition of the vital work that SHARE does, plus the support of legislators including State Senators Shirley Kitchen and Vincent Hughes, the State committed a $1 million Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program grant which enable them to stabilize their building and keep serving food banks throughout the Mid-Atlantic region.

In the past year, we:

  • Underwrote a $1.1 million investment to finance the acquisition of a labor staffing business in Philadelphia to provide 700 jobs to homeless or formerly incarcerated individuals. We also administer a $950,000 quasi-equity investment in this project.
  • Delivered $700,000 in construction and bridge financing to renovate a mixed use project in the heart of Milford, Delaware.
  • Provided $2.7 million in Financing for the new location of an independent school serving 200 low-income children in North Philadelphia.
  • Underwrote a $3.2 million loan to support a Transit-Oriented Development project and create a multi-tenant social service building which will consolidate offices of human services agencies and create a daycare facility that can accommodate up to 150 children.
  • Closed on a $6,000,000 in construction/permanent financign for a mixed use commercial space and $1.3 million in permanent financing for a 38-unit LIHTC housing project.
  • Secured a CDFI Fund Technical Assistance grant to support 2 years of operations at a small CDFI.
  • Underwrote $2.9 million in financing of a NMTC project to provide 85,000 sf of maker space in an underseved area in Queens.
  • Provided $2.8 million in financing for the renovation of 4 buildngs in West Center City Wilmington, DE to create 10 residential units and more than 10,000 sf of formerly vacant retail.