Three local initiatives in action

Race Equity Loan Fund

The Race Equity Loan Fund is a $2 million dollar investment from the Foundation for a Healthy St. Petersburg designed to support nonprofits who are working to advance racial equity in Pinellas county.

The Foundation is partnering with the Tampa Bay Black Business Investment Corporation, Inc. (BBIC) to offer reasonable and ready access to capital through an interest-free, zero-fee loan program.

Non-profits can use funds to sustain operations, improve services, and/or make capital investments.

Local nonprofits and community partners have communicated an ongoing need for loans, in particular to complement grant funding which is available on a cost reimbursement basis.

In many cases, nonprofits do not have adequate cash to pay for expenses which would be eligible for reimbursement through a grant. This not only prevents organizations from scaling their impact, but also deters nonprofits from applying for funding all together.

It is our hope that access to this financing will allow more non-profits to seek local, state, and federal grants (and other revenue sources), to magnify the resources available in the county.

Get Started

The following eligibility requirements must be met before an application and account can be created.

  •  Tax Exempt Public Charity under 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code
  •  Incorporated and Active for more than 1 Year
  •  Advance racial equity in Pinellas County
  •  Prior year expenses must be less than $15M
Applications are currently being accepted.
  • Applications are accepted on a continual basis until funds are allocated.

This webpage will be updated continuously with responses to new questions, new resources and tentative event information. 

Have a question? Please email


Start Your Application 

Frequently Asked Questions

Organizations must fulfill all of the requirements below.

  •  Tax Exempt Public Charity under 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code
  •  Incorporated and Active for more than 1 Year
  •  Advance racial equity in Pinellas County
  •  Prior year expenses must be less than $15M
  • The work of your organization should have a clear impact which improves the health and well-being of black and brown residents in Pinellas county. This is broad, and may incorporate intersections with the Social Determinants of Health. The work may benefit residents of all races, but the organization should be able to report out on demographic details to support the racial equity mission.

Yes, this was why the Loan Fund was created. If approved, the loan can be extended until another funding source is approved to reimburse your expenditures.

  • Foundation and BBIC will strive to expediently assess applications but anticipate a minimum of 4 weeks after the submission of all final materials before a decision is made. You can check on the status of your application in the Partner Portal any time.
  • The estimated time to complete the Letter of Interest (part one of the application) is approximately 2 hours, plus 3 hours to complete the full application. (5 hours)
    • Please review the application PDF to see which fields and required documents you’ll need to have accessible. Preparing this work in advance may help you to complete the application more easily.
  • The fund can be used to meet an organization’s cash flow needs. The locus of the organization’s work, such as in a CRA, or the nature of the work, such as affordable housing, are relevant factors in considering an application for funds.
  • Depending on their nature and the conditions for receipt, developer incentives could potentially be used as a repayment source.
  • The Foundation looks for greatest impact in Pinellas County, but applicants do not have to be headquartered in Pinellas.

The 0% fee is for the life of the loan.

  • Repayment terms and schedules are variable dependent on organizational circumstances.
  • The Loan Fund is intended to be reasonably flexible and adaptable to the particular organizational circumstances (use, need, repayment source). The Tampa Bay Black Business Investment Corporation (BBIC) is the intermediary for the loan and repayment process. They will review terms in detail with qualified applicants.
  • Please do not include the requested loan amount in these calculations.
  • Applications are reviewed by a team of reviewers composed of representatives from both the Foundation for a Healthy St. Petersburg and the Tampa Bay BBIC. The documents submitted guide the process, however, if Foundation or BBIC requires additional details they will coordinate with the applicant.
  • Gap funding is more fully described in the explanatory narrative included in the application. Generally, it is a gap in funding (cash flow) due to timing or unexpected loss or need, not budgetary shortfall.
  • The Loan Fund is not necessarily project-specific. The funds could be used for general operational needs so long as the repayment source requirement is met.
    • For example, an organization meets 80% of its expenses through reimbursement contracts, for which it has adequate cash flow. It has initiated new services which places a strain on cash flow (and equity reserves) for it 20% general operations (including unreimbursed programs).
    • It also receives an annual gift from an endowment in December which is sufficient to sustain its operations. This organization could get cash flow support in reasonable anticipation of the annual gift.
  • Funds can also be used for capital improvements which are supported by cost reimbursement grants.
  • If there is a repayment schedule/ source in place, you could use the loan to start a project/program. You are not required to use the fund for project based work. Please remember that this is a loan program, and all funds are required to be reimbursed by the end of the loan term.
  • The Loan Fund requires an executed grant agreement or commitment in the application process. If your grant is pending, please wait until it has been executed so you may attach the correct documentation to your application.
  • Reimbursement-based invoicing is one of the repayment options. The Foundation asks for a copy of an executed grant agreement or commitment is uploaded with your application.
  • Select this type if your organization receives revenue after the goods or services are provided. This includes cost reimbursement grants, or revenue where fees are billed to clients/customers. In these cases, a loan from the Loan Fund provides cash needed for the reimbursement or billing cycle, typically fulfilling two to four months of cash flow needs for the grant or initiative.
  • A van is considered a capital expenditure and CAN be funded via the Capital Loan Fund if a repayment source has been identified.
  • While not required for this loan, finding a fiscal agent may be something for your organization to consider based on your administrative capacity.

Certainly! Please email Brent Everett <> with your questions and he will respond, in detail.

  • While we expect the majority of loans made by the Fund will be in instances where there is reimbursement basis invoicing or where the loan provides bridge financing. However, we know every organization’s situation is unique, and expect you may have qualifying working capital needs which do not fall into either of these categories.
    • The Fund can be used “to manage unexpected loss or need.” For example, an organization otherwise with adequate cash flow might sustain a large uninsured loss (employee fraud, sewer backup, hurricane).
    • Or incur a substantial, unexpected, but necessary expense (a forensic audit, legal expenses, a temporary CEO). These examples would fall into “other working capital” on the loan application.
    • Additional examples of repayment sources other than cost reimbursement grants:
      • Receivables from fees for service
      • Contract for a sale of assets, such as property
      • Timing difference – revenue expected from upcoming fundraiser with consistent track record
      • Bank loan not yet received
      • Donations from funders to be provided at a future date, as evidenced by donor commitment letter
      • Other
  • Any income can be applied towards repayment. However, applications which collateralize repayment solely based on income from a project will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
  • Both-and. The Loan Fund was created to fulfill the short-term needs of nonprofits working in the race equity space and to generate an increase of diverse funding streams in Pinellas County. The funds can support programmatic needs or to make strategic investments (seize opportunity) as long as there is a repayment source.
  • Yes, if it is the anticipated repayment source.
  • The Foundation strategically invests in the race equity to health equity space, which includes a broad social determinants of health lens.   
  • During the full application applicants will be asked to share their project goal(s) and outcome measures, as well as demographic makeup of individuals served, if applicable.
  • Properties in the process of being sold will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Please contact Julie Rocco ( for additional information.

Submit a Question

Additional questions can be submitted via this survey link, or by emailing the Foundation at

Responses will be continuously published on the this webpage (at least once a week, if not daily.)

Join our Community of Changemakers

It is through our collective actions and ideas that we will achieve racial and healthy equity in Pinellas County. Keep pushing the movement forward. Connect with the Foundation to stay updated on opportunities, developments, and events around equity.

Thank you for your interest!