CDFIs Invest Campaign

  • Join our industry-wide call to action to urge Congress to

  • fully fund the CDFI Fund in FY18.


The CDFIs Invest Campaign is a national advocacy campaign led by OFN to inform members of Congress about the impact CDFIs have in their communities. Our message is simple: CDFIs Invest. Our ask is clear: we are asking Congress to support full funding for the CDFI Fund at $250 million in FY18.

OFN invites everyone to get involved, and we’ve made it easy to do so. For the latest policy updates, check out our blog and follow us on Twitter at @OppFinance. You can also find step-by-step instructions, and everything you need to make your voice heard in OFN’s Social Media Toolkit by exploring the tabs to the right. To date we’ve generated more than 10 million impressions for #CDFIsInvest. Our collective voice is getting stronger day-by-day. Thank you for joining in and being a part of this important effort. 

Contact Lindsay Li with questions about the social media campaign. Contact Jennifer Vasiloff, Chief External Affairs Officer, with questions about OFN's advocacy efforts.  


Our toolkit makes it easy to participate in our national social media campaign, #CDFIsInvest as you advocate online and in person for full funding of the CDFI Fund. Use our sample tweets and graphics to tell your CDFI’s impact story and urge Congress to support CDFI Fund funding at $250 million in FY18.

During this campaign, we’re specifically aiming to reach:

Check back periodically as we roll out new features of the campaign throughout the FY18 budget process.

infographics & messages to inform congress how CDFIs invest

Download our easy-to-use tailored infographics—featuring 10 years of CDFI Fund Financial Assistance (FA) awards data for jobs created, housing units built, and small businesses financed—on social media and in your site visits. Join us in the #CDFIsInvest campaign and share your impact numbers and stories.

OFN has 535 infographics, that's one for every member of Congress (Moc)! Easily locate your senators and representatives and send them a custom tweet!

Follow @OppFinance and watch #CDFIsInvest on Twitter and Like, ReTweet, and engage with the campaign, especially in the next few weeks. Together, let’s demonstrate the CDFI impact across the U.S.!

Here’s how to participate:

Step 1: Download the infographic(s) for your districts

Step 2: Modify our sample tweets to show off your unique impact alongside the local infographic data

Step 3: Follow us on social media and retweet our tweets

Step 4: Share this toolkit with your local borrowers, supporters, and partners to help amplify the message!

Sample Tweets:

Make a direct ask of your MoC:

  • .@YourMoc #CDFIs are market-driven, responsible financial institutions at work in your community #CDFIsInvest <include your MoC infographic>
  • .@YourMoC #CDFIsInvest $XXmm in [STATE-DISTRICT] from FY05-FY15! Support $250MM for @CDFIFund in FY18<include your MoC infographic>
  • .@YourMoC #CDFIs leverage funding from private and public sources to finance #smallbiz, #housing, and #families in [STATE-DISTRICT]. Here’s our story of how #CDFIsInvest: <link to success story> < include your MoC infographic> 

Showcase your local impact:

  • .@YourMoc #DYK (YourCDFI) has financed X #smallbiz, & created X jobs! Together #CDFIsInvest <include your MoC infographic>
  • .@YourMoc #CDFIsInvest in individuals. We helped XX local constituents increase their credit score this year <include you MoC infographic>
  • .@YourMoc #CDFIsInvest in (your state/district)! In 2017 we helped finance XX affordable homes <include your MoC infographic>

Highlight a local borrower or project:

  • .@YourMoc while you’re in town, grab a coffee at @BorrowerCoffeeShop, we provided Joe & Linda with startup financing this year #CDFIsInvest <include your MoC infographic>
  • .@YourMoc #DYK that @BORROWER came to us for tech. assistance on their business plan? #CDFIsInvest in growth! <include your MoC infographic>
  • .@YourMoc (recently financed borrower or project) is our #CDFIstory of how #CDFIsInvest in #smallbiz/rural/familes. Check out how <link to story on your page or in the local news> <include your MoC infographic>

Show the National Impact with our national infographic:

  • .@YourMoC @CDFIFund FA awards from FY05-FY15 have led to $30.4 billion in loans supporting #jobs, #housing, #smallbiz, & much more! #CDFIsInvest  <include national infographic>
  • .@YourMoC #CDFIsInvest by leveraging @CDFIFund awards at a ratio of 12:1. Learn more at <include national infographic>


Hashtags that tap into the conversation:









Virtual Advocacy Day 2017 Toolkit 

On May 17, nearly 90 OFN Members and OFN CDFI Allies will converge on Capitol Hill for OFN’s 2017 Advocacy Day. Not going to D.C.? Not a problem! Support our efforts on the Hill by participating in Virtual Advocacy Day and advocating for CDFIs from your desk!

Your involvement is more important than ever. President Trump’s FY18 budget proposal has zeroed out funding for CDFI Fund programs. The industry needs all CDFIs, borrowers, allies, and partners to let Congress know that CDFI investments create jobs, support small business, build affordable housing, provide healthcare, and more. Help us amplify the message that CDFIs Invest in America and urge Congress to fund the CDFI Fund at $250MM for FY18.

In addition to tools already available in the CDFIs Invest Toolkit, below are new assets developed specifically for Virtual Advocacy Day, May 17. 

We encourage you to use national and state data from the CDFI Fund Transaction Level Report Database, FY 2005-2015. Let’s show off our impact! OFN has organized the data for easy reference on the new industry advocacy day tool





Borrower Stories

ABOUT #CDFISinvest in America

In the first phase of our campaign, we set the tone. We shared messaging points via a conversation on Twitter about how #CDFIsInvest in America. Feel free to share these conversations on your social media threads by linking to the ones that apply to how your CDFI invests.

OFN's Core Threaded Tweets


Links to the original Tweet are included below, as well as graphics of it to use on other social media like Facebook or Instagram. RT the original and call out to your Member of Congress, or right-click to download the graphic. Personalize it by adding your CDFI's impact data using our samples for each theme below:

Samples for Your CDFI

Each theme featured in the campaign was selected based on talking points of the current Appropriations leadership. While it may not explicitly touch on your main service area, there are still ways we want every CDFI to feel empowered to plug in. For instance, if affordable housing is your primary focus, tap into your data around job creation, serving families, or working in rural or Native communities.

Please note: If you are sharing a borrower story with your statement, also include #CDFIstory

Want to add your voice? These messages will be available on this site throughout the appropriations process and until the final FY17 and FY18 budget votes.

#CDFIsInvest in America Sample Tweets

#CDFIsInvest in #SmallBiz: Sample Tweets, Templates, and Graphics

#CDFIsInvest in #Jobs: Sample Tweets, Templates, and Graphics

#CDFIsInvest in #Rural America Sample Tweets, Templates, and Graphics

#CDFIsInvest in #Families: Sample Tweets, Templates, and Graphics

#CDFIsInvest in #Native: Sample Tweets, Templates, and Graphics


#CDFIsInvest in Your Community

Share the direct impact CDFIs have made in your state or congressional district.

OFN will continue to tweet directly at members of the FSGG subcommittees, sharing total state and congressional district data based on CDFI Fund and OFN Member reporting. We need you to reach out to your members of Congress to amplify our message—even if they are not part of these subcommittees.

Each tweet will continue the #CDFIsInvest conversation. RT @OppFinance tweets and use our tools below to share your CDFI impact with your members of Congress.

Make sure to check the #CDFIsInvest feed on Twitter and retweet your peers in the industry as well! You can also start asking your borrowers to get involved by retweeting your posts or OFN's, or creating their own.

Find your Members of Congress on Twitter here.

Sample Tweets

  • .@YourSenator #CDFIsInvest in #state! YOURCDFI invested $XX, creating XX #jobs
  • .@YourSenator #CDFIsInvest in #state! We have made an impact on #rural communities, investing XX to create economic opportunity where it is needed most
  • .@YourRep #CDFIsInvest in DistrictX! We financed a #communityfacility that serves XX individuals, creating XX #jobs
  • .@YourRep: #CDFIsInvest in DistrictX. We work urban areas, providing fiscally responsible investment for #smallbiz and #families!
  • .@YourRep: #CDFIsInvest in DistrictX. We worked with XYZ #smallbiz, helping them to become bankable and ready to grow their business!


Use a template below to share your total impact, going beyond the tweet above:

  • Right-click to download
  • Enter your state or district in the space provided (you may need to modify the font size)
  • Modify the text to match your CDFI's impact in that area. It can be one sentence or a bulleted list
  • Save as a .jpg
  • Add the image to your tweet

Graphic: General CDFI Fund Ask

Add this to your tweets to ask for CDFI Fund funding in FY18


These messages and tools will be available throughout the appropriations process and until the final FY17 and FY18 budget votes.

#CDFIsInvest in Your borrowers

OFN will tweet your borrower stories directly at members of the FSGG subcommittees of the Senate and House. We want to show how CDFI investment directly benefits individuals and communities in the areas they serve by sharing CDFI borrower stories of their constituents, and surfacing the issues that they care about. In addition to the verticals we shared in our #CDFIsInvest in America section, here a few key areas of interest you may want to highlight:

  • Veterans
  • Religious Institutions
  • CDFIs serving areas and populations that traditional financing cannot/does not
  • Bankability (unbanked and underbanked): highlight your role in financial literacy training and supporting small businesses with technical assistance

We need you to reach out to your members of Congress to amplify our message and show them just how important CDFIs are to their constituents. Our tools below are available for your use in this effort.

Each tweet continues the #CDFIsInvest conversation. Where appropriate, we are adding in or asking our borrowers to say #CDFIsInvest in Me

Use our Borrower Tools to get your borrowers involved in retweeting campaign posts or creating their own, we have samples for them as well!

Advocating for the CDFI Fund requires constant communication efforts and outreach. The stronger our voice, the more visibility we can create for the CDFI industry at this critical time. Let’s make a lasting impression!

Get started here:

Check the #CDFIsInvest feed on Twitter and retweet @OppFinance and your peers in the industry as well!

Find your Members of Congress on Twitter here.

Sample Tweets:

  • @YourRep: #CDFIsInvest in your community! Our financing preserved 580 housing units <photo or link>
  • @YourRep: Here’s a #CDFIstory of how #CDFIsInvest in DISTRICT: Financing <shop> to create <benefit, for example: fresh food access>
  • @YourRep: #CDFIsInvest in #families. YOURCDFI provides #financialliteracy training <photo or link of impact data and people served >
  • @YourRep: #CDFIsInvest in #veterans. YOURCDFI finances #supportivehousing <photo or link>
  • @YourRep: #CDFIsInvest in #smallbiz! @YOURBORROWER would not have access to capital <link to story or use photo, use borrower quote that shows important role your CDFI played>
  • @YourRep: #CDFIsInvest in your constituents! <Link to borrower story or photo showing borrower impact>

Sample Borrower Story: 

A few samples of how to frame your borrower story photos on social media.




Use this template to share how #CDFIsInvest in your borrowers. The template is based in PowerPoint so you can easily modify and save it as a .jpg

  • Right-click to download
  • Insert your Borrower photo
  • Include a quote or impact data in the field provided
  • If desired, include your logo. Here is a sample of how OFN Member BBIF used the template:

Printable: CDFIs Invest in Me!

Ask your borrower to take a photo holding this sign to use in your tweets (or theirs!), or use it in site visits with your borrowers.


It is time to activate your borrowers! Reach out to the individuals and organizations you have loaned to, or partnered with, and tell them that we need their voice as we show Congress who CDFIs invest in.

Key Messaging Points:

Borrowers and other CDFI champions across the country are needed to illustrate the impact CDFIs have had on their lives, businesses, and communities. They are key constituents, and Congress will be  Ask your borrowers to share a simple message that touches on one or more of the following:

  • How #CDFIsInvest in them
  • What their alternatives would be without a CDFI
  • What role your CDFI played in their community

Contact Your Borrowers

Get your borrowers on board with our campaign with sample scripts that explain our message and why their involvement is critical. Use our sample templates or create your own.

  • Call select borrowers, and then follow up with an email to encourage their participation.
  • Provide a template for them to reach out directly to their members of Congress via email and phone. Fill in as much of the sample email as you can, but leave space for the borrower to personalize their story.
  • Provide the contact information for your borrower’s members of Congress

Borrower Tweets

Make it easy for your borrower to participate and share their #CDFIstory. We’ve created a few samples that you can tweak before sharing. Make sure to provide them with the handles of your members of Congress that you want to call out.

  • @YourRep: @YourCDFI was there for my #smallbiz when banks turned me down. #CDFIsInvest in me and my future!
  • @YourRep: @YourCDFI invested $XX to bring GROCERYSTORE to our community, providing access to #healthyfoods. #CDFIsIvest in families!
  • @YourRep: @YourCDFI invested in @BUSINESS, creating XX new jobs in my small town. #CDFIsInvest in me, and in #rural America!
  • @YourRep: @YourCDFI worked with me to build my credit and savings so I could finally afford my first home. #CDFIsInvest in me!

Create a Borrower Video

Videos make a strong impression, and offer a way to tell your CDFI impact story on a personal and tangible level. They require little equipment, other than a smart phone.

To make it easier for borrowers to participate, provide a script (see sample below). Offer to record the video for them, or provide a link to this script so they can access it when it best fits their schedule.


  • Use your smart phone in Landscape mode to record the video.
  • Upload the file to your YouTube channel, Vimeo, or other video service.
  • Share the link on your social media and tag their representative (if they differ from yours)
  • Try to keep the script to 100 words or less, the ideal video is 30-seconds or less
  • Ask your borrower to hold up this sign at the end of their video.


  • Introduction/Set up: Name of the borrower or project and set up the CDFIs Invest in me tagline.
  • Name the Conflict: Have the borrower explain why they needed financing from your CDFI
  • How did they hear about your CDFI: What connected them to you?
  • How did your CDFI provide the solution: Have the borrower briefly explain how your CDFI met that need.
  • Close: Provide a testimonial


My name is <Jane Doe>, and CDFIs Invest in me.

I came to <XYZ CDFI> because I was ready to launch my small business, but needed startup capital. Most banks I talked to said they couldn’t finance me until I had three years of experience. But one recommended I talk to <XYZ CDFI>.

I met with <LENDER> and <he/she> helped me prepare my business plan and make five-year sales projections. Then we worked on my credit. I got the loan I needed to take my business from my kitchen to a storefront. Since then I've hired two part-time workers and one full-time.

Without <XYZ CDFI> I wouldn’t be where I am today.

A CDFI Invested in Me!

Congressional Twitter Handles

During this campaign, we’re specifically aiming to reach:

  • Members of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees, who set funding levels for federal programs.
  • Members of the House and Senate Financial Services & General Government (FSGG) Subcommittees of the Appropriations Committee because FSGG has jurisdiction over the CDFI Fund.
  • Members of Congress who represent your CDFI's location district and service area and where it operates—they can influence the Appropriations Committee and will vote on the final budget.


Don’t stop with social media!

  • Share #CDFIsInvest Infographics: In addition to sharing on social media, use the infographics in your visits and when you contact congressional staff via email to inform them about CDFI impact in their state or district. 
  • Schedule a Congressional Site Visit: Whenever members of Congress are scheduled to be in their districts/states, invite them to visit your CDFI and meet with your borrowers. Please complete this form or contact Katie Havlovic once you have scheduled an on-site visit or if you need any assistance.
  • Get on the CDFI Coverage Map: OFN regularly uses this tool to demonstrate to members of Congress the impact CDFIs have nationwide. Click here to learn how to add your loan data.