creating a more just economy- right here in Detroit.


What We Do

Non-Extractive loans

Our approach is unique because we are non-extractive. We do not require personal assets as collateral, and loans are only paid back as a percentage of profit. We intentionally do not benefit financially from the failure of businesses we lend to - we design our programs to succeed when only when they succeed. While conventional banks would regard this as risky, The Working World has been doing non-extractive finance for over 10 years and has a 95% return rate, with over 1,000 successful investments.  


holistic business support 

DCWF supports the business to succeed all the way through the loan cycle. We help businesses create strong feasibility studies and business plans and prepare them to receive and manage a loan. DCWF assigns a loan coach to each business for the duration of the loan, tracking milestones to make sure the project is on track. 


democratic control of the loan fund

Once the loan is repaid, the business becomes a member of the loan fund, and participates in the democratic decision making process to select future loan projects. We are not just growing individual businesses - we’re building infrastructure.