Congratulations to 2012 ULI Chicago Community Vision Award Winner, Sweet Beginnings, on their selection for the first round of impact investment awards by Benefit Chicago!
Sweet Beginnings LLC, is a wholly owned subsidiary of the North Lawndale Employment Network and offers full-time transitional jobs for formerly incarcerated individuals and others with significant barriers to employment in a green industry. Sweet Beginnings produces an all-natural line of raw honey and honey-infused body care products that are sold online and a host of retailers across the Chicago area including Whole Foods Market and Mariano’s.
Benefit Chicago is a collaboration of the Chicago Community Trust, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, and Calvert Foundation, established to expand the capital available for loans and investments for non-profits and social enterprises in the Chicago area, which might not meet the criteria of commercial lenders and therefore face financing gaps. Benefit Chicago’s goal is to offer $100 million in loans and other investments on a rolling basis; the first round that included a total award of $12 million for six organizations, was announced on May 16, 2017.
You can join ULI Chicago on May 31, 2017 for our 6th Annual Vision Awards, where we will recognizes other projects, programs and young professionals, that are defining the standard of real estate development in the Chicagoland area, just as Sweet Beginnings is.