Social change work is hard and frustrating and wonderful and terrible; it is also, at times, funny, quirky and just plain fascinating. With this blog we hope to capture all that goes into what we do at Capital Good Fund, and we invite you to join the conversation!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

You Gotta Plan...And You Gotta Believe

50 years since the  "I Have A Dream" speech More Than A Plan, More Than a Dream: A Belief
Martin Luther King didn't just have a dream, he had a plan: marches, sit-ins, legislative advocacy.  But no amount of dreaming, and no amount of planning, could comfort him when the death threats rained upon him, when the Churches were bombed and the dogs set loose; no, in those all-too-frequent (if not constant) moments, he needed something else: belief.  Belief that was not always justifiable; belief that strained the bounds of credulity; belief that he almost certainly struggled to believe himself.  Yet that belief remained, and it resonated in the hearts and minds of the countless thousands that risked their lives for justice, and it resonated even in the hearts and minds of those who would prefer to look the other way--but couldn't, because the Civil Rights movement forced them to...forced them to believe that change was coming.

O, but it's so hard.  During the darkest days of the Cuban Missile Crisis, or the Battle of Britain, or the Civil War, or the American Revolution, or the myriad other events that shaped history, how many times did the way forward seem impossible, unthinkable?  How often were the best of plans laid to waste, the best thinkers proven wrong?  And yet sometimes, in the midst of strife--moments when all the roads to Justice have been washed away by a torrent of hopelessness--a path is forged.  It is a path that defies logic, that shouldn't work...and then somehow does.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

What Do Our Customers Need?

money and savings I just finished reading a fantastic book titled Portfolios of the Poor: How The World's Poor Live on $2 a Day, a provocative look at how the poor actually related to and make use of financial services.  By meeting with hundreds of families every two weeks for a year, the authors were able to not only understand how much money they bring in per year--which is the number we usually hear of--but also what their cash flow looks like month-to-month.  As I've come to learn over the years, cash flow is king: it doesn't matter how much money you have, if the timing of inflows doesn't match the timing of outflows, you've got a problem!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Guest Blog Post: Mintaka Angell, Financial Coaching Fellow

While many students can attest to emphasizing service work on their college applications, it seems that this focus begins to slip soon after the "submit" button is clicked. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics, for example, recently found that overall levels of volunteerism were declining in America - with the lowest levels of service prevalent among 20-24 year olds. With raising college tuition and ever-increasing stress to conform to a specific set of criteria for the job market, it's easy to understand why fewer college students are finding the time to participate in social justice and change. However, there are several reasons that service is invaluable, no matter a student's situation.   Not only is it a personally enriching experience that deepens communal connections, fosters new friendships, and allows for each person to contribute towards positive change in their community, is also opens a series of perspectives vital for the next generation of leaders to understand. Here are five (5) reasons that service and social justice work are an irreplaceable component of every college student's education: