The RISC Foundation, Inc. was established in 2008 as a 501(c)(3) private non-operating foundation. The Foundation’s primary mission is expressed in its name. RISC is an acronym for Responsible Investment for Social Change and is an expression both of an intent to promote positive social change and of a willingness to assume “risk” in making “investment” decisions designed to promote this change.
The Foundation has determined that its initial focus will be on economic development in the City of New Haven, Connecticut. The Foundation’s focus is based on the following considerations: that New Haven presents the type of economic development problems typical of urban areas (so that programs in the city could have relevance for other urban areas); that New Haven is small enough that the resources of the Foundation can have a significant impact; and that New Haven, through Yale University and other local participants in economic development activities, has resources to build upon without starting from zero.
The Foundation believes that the economic development it seeks to foster requires making New Haven both better for the less fortunate and more attractive for the affluent and better educated. In the short term, however, the Foundation expects the primary focus of its economic development in New Haven will be directed toward the poorer areas of the city.
The Foundation expects that it will use most of its resources to make Program Related Investments aimed at fostering sustainable development in these less advantaged areas and “recycling” these investments as they become sustainable. In keeping with its belief that it must assume risk in order to accomplish its goals, the Foundation expects that its Program Related Investments will serve as leverage to secure less risk oriented capital.The RISC Foundation anticipates that most of its New Haven activities will be undertaken through a separate entity that it has created, the New Haven Investment Fund, LLC.