Celebrating Our Partners: Investing in Manna on Main Street’s Online Market Hub
HealthSpark Foundation is excited to announce our first program-related Investment as part of our commitment to strengthening and expanding the safety net system in Montgomery County.
This program-related investment provides a below-market rate loan to Manna on Main Street to support the renovations needed for the Online Market Hub at 10 N. Cannon Ave. in Lansdale Borough, which was recently purchased by Manna as part of their 10 Year Campaign, “A North Penn Where No One is Hungry.” The Online Market Hub will directly address the growing food security needs of the region and builds on Manna’s innovative efforts to modernize food security programming, increase culturally diverse offerings, and partner with other safety net organizations to provide holistic community services.
"We are proud to support Manna’s efforts through this loan because it signifies our unwavering dedication to building a more just and effective safety net system in Montgomery County. Through this type of mission- related investment, we have the power to drive positive change and leave a meaningful impact on the communities we serve, and that is something we are truly proud of,” said Joel Johnson, Board Chair of HealthSpark Foundation.
The project is located in the foundation’s original geographic catchment area of North Penn, which further anchors our commitment to this locality and honors our roots in the North Penn community.
Increasing our impact in the region through mission- related investments
HealthSpark is able to offer a below-market rate loan that is aligned with our foundation’s charitable mission through a process called a program-related investment.
The program-related investment does not reduce our grantmaking portfolio in the county. Rather, funds for the loan come from our endowment, and are distributed at a rate above our required charitable distribution for the year. As Manna repays the loan funds to HealthSpark, those funds will be redeployed into the community through future program-related investments. This cycle results in an increased financial investment by HealthSpark directly into Montgomery County communities.
Program-related investments and other forms of mission related investing can seed long-term improvements to the safety net system infrastructure. As well, they support greater financial health of the nonprofit sector by offering more favorable financing than a traditional market-rate loan.
"HealthSpark is deeply committed to providing long-term, sustainable support for a stronger safety net system in Montgomery County,” said Emma Hertz, President and CEO of HealthSpark Foundation. “We believe that this program-related investment offers our foundation a new tool to grow our impact and our partnerships in the county.”
A history of community investment
This project builds on HealthSpark’s past community investment efforts.
In 2008, HealthSpark opened the Community Partners Center at 2506 N. Broad Street in Colmar, which offers high quality, below-market rate rental office space and no-cost community gathering space to area nonprofits. We continue to operate the center as part of our charitable mission in the community and are proud to offer state-of-the-art technology in our recently upgraded large meeting room.
As well, HealthSpark served as a founding partner for the North Penn Commons, the first co-located nonprofit service/ affordable senior housing center in the Commonwealth, where Manna’s main site is located- and will continue to be located as the Hub expands their presence in Lansdale.
Finally, we own a local three-bedroom home in Colmar, which we maintain as an affordable housing property through a partnership with Family Promise MontCo PA, the Montgomery County Housing Authority, and the Montgomery County Office of Housing and Community Development.
Eye towards the future
As we look ahead, HealthSpark is intent upon utilizing more of our foundation’s assets in line with our mission. Our board is actively engaged in discussions regarding how to align our investment portfolio with our vision and values, and we look forward to sharing more information with the community as we take steps in that direction.
Please join us in celebrating this milestone and stay tuned for updates on the progress and impact of this transformative project from Manna on Main Street.