Community Impact Investment Organizations (CIIO) are a new and innovative support system for community and economic development that effectively bridges the gap between local investors and local ventures in need of financing. CIIOs create cost-effective, community- owned and controlled impact funds. The longer a dollar can circulate within a community, the greater its multiplier effect. In other words, when your money is invested in local projects and people, it stays in the community in the form of wages, rents, and local purchases- increasing its impact on your community’s economic development many times over.
This guide is the result of over six years of research, resource development, and partnership-building by Kootenay Emplyment Services Society. Our goal is not to tell you how to set up a specific CIC. Rather, this guide provides your community with recommendations and options and poses questions that will catalyze local discussions. This will allow you to tailor the CIC model to your own local context with support from a co-op developer and lawyer. It is our intent that this guide expedites the development process for your community. It is our hope that many more CIIOs establish in the coming years. With the support of local investors, these new CICs can provide local solutions to key social, environmental and economic challenges.