I have easy-to-create graphics and demonstrations I can use [in grantmaking and reporting] thanks to the wonderfulness of PolicyMap. Larry Griffin, Treasurer at Beech Companies
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‘Describe the community you serve.’ The common prompt found on federal grant applications is not always simple to answer. As we learned from the most recent decennial census, our communities are highly dynamic—moving, aging, and diversifying. Founded 30 years ago in the heart of North Philly, Beech Companies is a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) and Community Development Corporation (CDCs) located near Temple University’s campus on Cecil B. Moore Avenue. According to Treasurer Larry Griffin, gathering and analyzing data to understand their community is “difficult and unwieldy.” For example, finding data on median income by zip code required sourcing data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC), and other third party sources, without confidence that the datasets aligned correctly.


Now, Beech Companies partners with PolicyMap to support their grantmaking efforts to fund a myriad of upcoming projects. Beech Companies owns a 200-bed student-housing facility. In recent years, the student housing market in the area has become saturated and the needs of the community have changed. Griffin believes PolicyMap will help him demonstrate the need for affordable housing for single seniors and win a grant to convert the building. In addition, Beech Companies has recently used PolicyMap to bolster their application to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to become a state-accredited CDFI. Griffin also hopes to win grants from the Capital Magnet Fund with better data and insights from PolicyMap in the upcoming year. Our team is looking forward to continued collaboration with and success for the entire Beech Companies organization.