By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Investment Weekly News
Bank of America announced the results of a first-of-its-kind study exploring opportunities to use pay-for-success (PFS) programs and other innovative forms of social financing and impact investing to expand social service programs for U.S. military veterans. The study was conducted in partnership with Social Finance, a nonprofit intermediary organization dedicated to mobilizing investment capital to drive social progress through innovative funding models, with the findings now published in a new report, "Improving Outcomes for Veterans: Assessing Pay for Success Opportunities."
Findings from the study were shared today with senior government and military officials, corporate leaders and veteran-focused service organizations at the George W. Bush Institute's Military Service Initiative Summit in Dallas. During the event, Bank of America also shared plans to collaborate with the Wounded Warrior Project and Social Finance to further examine the potential for a PFS program to expand workforce development services for veterans, based on findings from the study. These services are vitally important as veterans reenter civilian life and seek employment.
"Thanks to this research, we've identified several areas where innovative forms of social finance could help expand services greatly needed by our growing military veteran population," said Andy Sieg, head of Global Wealth and Retirement Solutions for Bank of America Merrill Lynch. "Providing investors the opportunity to direct capital to services proven to produce positive outcomes gives them the chance to invest in accordance with their values and improve the lives of those who have protected ours." Potential to scale veterans services for greater impact With more than 22 million veterans living in the U.S. today, and as many as 300,000 additional service members expected to leave the military annually over the next five years, services for these men and women will increasingly require additional resources. For this reason, Bank of America engaged Social Finance to help assess the viability of using PFS programs to scale the operations of organizations proven to be effective but that lack the funding needed to have an even greater impact. The availability of sufficient metrics to establish the effectiveness of these services is what makes a measurable PFS program possible.
"There are many effective organizations providing veteran services across the nation, however most need greater and more reliable funding to grow their programs," said Tracy Palandjian, CEO and co-founder ofSocial Finance Inc. "Our research has helped identify interventions and programs ready to scale to help more veterans stay healthy, be productive and enrich their lives. At the same time, we hope that these insights will serve as a catalyst to help drive government resources toward programs that measurably improve the lives of veterans and their families."