Social Impact Bond Showcase

New collaborations, maximum social impact.

Read More

Social Impact Bonds are a relatively new financing solution in the past decade, bringing together the public sector, the private sector, and the philanthropic community into a partnership that tests a new form of collaboration focused on maximizing shared social impact goals.

We first hear from three communities in the United States: Anchorage, Alaska; Denver, Colorado; and Santa Clara County, California, who are currently pioneering homelessness-focused social impact bonds to learn how the bonds were formed, how the program is working, and what is next in this great collaborative frontier.

Read Less



City/CountyMunicipality of Anchorage
Size$12.75 million ($2 million philanthropy, $4.5 million Municipality of Anchorage outcome payments, additional state/federal housing and healthcare funding)
BackgroundAnchorage Assembly authorized the Municipality to enter into a Pay for Success contract, which requires the project to demonstrate success before accessing municipal funding.
MissionTransition persistently homeless population into permanent housing
Population Serving“Frequent users” or “super-utilizers” who cycle in and out of public systems, primarily homeless shelters, criminal justice, and emergency health services.
Impact ScopeHouse 150 individuals
Announcement DateFeasibility phase began in Fall 2017, pilot year began July 2019
Pre-Launch / Pilot Period1 year
Start DateOctober 2020
Anticipated End DateOctober 2023 (3 years)




City/CountyCity and County of Denver, CO
Size$23.7 million ($8.6 million from social impact sources + federal sources)
BackgroundCity and County of Denver and eight private investors closed on the city’s first SIB program.
MissionHousing stability and decreased jail stays
Population ServingFund supportive housing for people who were homeless for more than a year (“chronic homeless”) or had a disabling condition and were frequent users of emergency systems – “frequent users” or “super-utilizers”.
Impact ScopeHouse 300 individuals
Announcement DateJune 2014
Pre-Launch / Pilot Period
Start DateFebruary 2016
Anticipated End DateFebruary 2021 (5 years)


Context Notes

Each year, 250 chronically homeless individuals account for:
o 14,000 days in jail
o 2,200 visits to detox
o 1,500 arrests
o 500 emergency room visits

Each year, the average cost to taxpayers per individual is $29,000, resulting from jail days, police
encounters, court costs, detox, ER and other medical visits.

Each year, the City spends approximately $7 million on 250 individuals to cover the expenses above.

Source: CSH Fact Sheet



City/CountyThe County of Santa Clara
Size$6.9 million
BackgroundProject Welcome Home is the first of two Pay for Success projects led by the County with support from its advisor, Third Sector Capital Partners. Launched through a Disruptive Innovation grant funded by the Health Trust and awarded to Step Up Silicon Valley.
MissionProvide housing and supportive services for the chronically homeless and aim to improve quality of life and reduce reliance on costly government services.
Population Serving
Impact Scope150-200 chronically homeless individuals
Announcement Date2015
Pre-Launch / Pilot Period
Start DateSeptember 2015
Anticipated End DateSeptember 2021

Context Notes

study published in May by the Economic Roundtable, a policy research nonprofit in California, found that more than 2,800 people are chronically homeless in Santa Clara County, and each of them costs about $83,000 a year in public spending. Cortese and the rest of the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors are betting that as the homeless population drops, some of that $83,000 in spending at local jails, emergency rooms and shelters will drop as well.

Contract Dynamics

Use of FundsSupportive services (intensive case management) and flexible housing support for up to 150 individuals
Outcome PayorMunicipality of Anchorage
“Success” TriggerEach month individual is stably housed (up to 24 months), with carefully defined exceptions and exclusions for things like jail or hospital stays
Outcome Payment DetailNone, all “savings” recycled back into project’s costs
Repayment FrequencySemi-annual
Range of PaymentN/A – Started in October 2020, too early for any payments to have been made to date
Term3 years*


*Budget is funded for 3-year program, however, there is no obligation for the city/state to keep funding beyond 3 years – longer term program to be funded by City and State if successful outcomes reached.

Contract Dynamics

Use of FundsHousing vouchers for 40 existing units, construction financing for 210 new units in Denver
Outcome PayorCity and County of Denver
“Success” TriggerQualifying participants are those who spent at least one year in housing or had a planned exit. (1) Reduction in jail bed days, (2) housing stability
Outcome Payment Detail$15.12 for each day each qualifying participant was stably housed and not in jail
Repayment FrequencyQuarterly
Range of Quarterly Payment$188k-$837k/quarter
Term5 years


Contract Dynamics

Use of Funds
Outcome PayorThe County of Santa Clara
“Success” TriggerEach quarter individual is stably housed, with carefully defined exceptions and exclusions for things like jail or hospital stays
Outcome Payment DetailPayment to Lender per Program Participant Milestone – $1,242/participant housed for 3 months, $6,831 paid for 12 months continuous housing (Table)
Repayment FrequencyQuarterly
Range of Quarterly Payment


Fiscal Agent / 

Financial Advisor

Social Finance (financial advisor), no fiscal agent
Project ManagerUnited Way of Anchorage
Service Provider 1Southcentral Foundation
Service Provider 2Alaska Behavioral Health
Managed Care Organization
Project DevelopmentN/A – scattered site model across many housing projects, no new housing created
Independent EvaluatorsNPC Research
Evaluation GrantorHUD/DOJ grant*
Government Advisor & Transaction CoordinatorSocial Finance
Technical PartnerThe Corporation for Supportive Housing
Legal SupportN/A
Early SupportersDOJ and HUD grant*


Partnership Notes

*In 2016, United Way of Anchorage, in partnership with the Municipality of Anchorage and other community stakeholders, was awarded a $1.3 million grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and U.S. Department of Justice will be used to support the implementation of a program to address homelessness financed via a social impact bond. The grant provides support for feasibility, transaction structuring, and evaluation activities for the project.



Fiscal AgentEnterprise Community Partners, Inc.
Project ManagerCorporation for Supportive Housing
Service Provider 1Colorado Coalition for the Homeless
Service Provider 2Mental Health Center for Denver
Managed Care OrganizationColorado Access
Project DevelopmentSocial Impact Solutions
Independent EvaluatorsUrban Institute with local partner the University of Colorado Denver and the Burnes Institute
Evaluation Grantor
Government Advisor & Transaction Coordinator
Technical Partner
Legal Support
Early Supporters

Partnership Notes

Additional Support Provided by:

  • Harvard Kennedy School Government Performance Lab
  • Colorado Division of Housing and Colorado Governor’s Office
  • Colorado Housing Finance Authority
  • Denver Housing Authority
  • Feasibility Grants: The Piton Foundation, Kaiser Permanente, The Denver Foundation, and the Rose Community Foundation
  • Transaction Structuring Grant: Nonprofit Finance Fund and the Social Innovation Fund at the Corporation for National and Community Service


Fiscal AgentThird Sector Capital Partners
Project Manager
Service Provider 1Abode Services
Service Provider 2
Managed Care Organization
Project Development
Independent EvaluatorsUniversity of California, San Francisco
Evaluation GrantorLaura and John Arnold Foundation
Government Advisor & Transaction CoordinatorThird Sector Capital Partners
Technical PartnerPalantir Technologies (technology platform for data sharing)
Legal SupportFenwick & West and Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP,
Early SupportersStep Up Silicon Valley, Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County, Silicon Valley Community Foundation, Sobrato Family Foundation, The Health Trust, California Pay for Success Initiative (administered by Nonprofit Finance Fund and funded by The James Irvine Foundation)

Investor Notes

The Rasmuson Foundation and the Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority also contributed funding for a pilot program from July 2019 to September 2020 to help bring the project to scale. The project also received support during the pilot period from the Alaska Community Foundation.

All four funders for the contract term — the Rasmuson Foundation, Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority, Providence Health and Services Alaska, and Premera Blue Cross — have committed to reinvest all qualified ‘success payments’ back into the program’s ongoing expenses, rather than earn a return or get paid back on the investment.

Social Finance’s work on this project has been generously supported by The Kresge Foundation and Corporation for National and Community Service




Soc Housing Innovation Collaborative