Windmill Microlending receives $1 million grant from the TD Ready Challenge

October 5, 2021

TD Bank Group initiative to support inclusivity and sustainability will fund microloans and professional success for Windmill clients

Calgary – Windmill Microlending has been awarded a $1MM grant from The TD Ready Challenge, a new signature initiative created and funded by TD Bank Group. Designed to support organizations offering scalable solutions to promote inclusivity and prosperity, Windmill is the only dedicated immigrant-serving organization to receive one of the ten $1MM grants offered by the program.

The grant will help support Windmill Microlending (formerly known as Immigrant Access Fund Canada), as the charity undertakes an ambitious plan to serve many more skilled immigrants and refugees across Canada. Windmill offers low-interest microloans to help newcomers pay for the training or licensing they need to obtain credentials to work in Canada. Funds from TD will support new microloans as well as enhanced client support services.

“Immigrants bring education, skills and experience that too often go to waste,” said Windmill CEO, Claudia Hepburn. “TD’s generous support will help us convert the skills and experience of our newcomers into prosperity for Canada. We are delighted to be partnering with TD to help us scale up.”

“The TD Ready Challenge is our new signature initiative to catalyze innovative solutions for a changing world,” said Andrea Barrack, Vice President, Global Corporate Citizenship, TD Bank Group. “We’re proud to be helping Windmill increase inclusive prosperity and the economic integration of skilled immigrants and refugees.”

Underemployment of immigrants costs Canada as much as $12.7B annually according to the Conference Board of Canada. Since 2005, Windmill has helped over 4,000 skilled immigrants and refugees restart their careers in Canada. Windmill clients double or triple their income, on average, by the time their loan is repaid. The repayment rate for Windmill loans is 97.5%.

About Windmill Microlending
Formerly known as Immigrant Access Fund Canada, Windmill Microlending is Canada’s largest and most successful microlending charity for skilled immigrants and refugees. Windmill converts potential into prosperity by offering low-interest loans to help skilled newcomers obtain the credentials they need to restart their careers in Canada. Windmill is located in Calgary, with offices in Toronto, Edmonton and Saskatoon, and serves clients across the country. Windmill Microlending is a registered charity supported by donors, sponsors and granting agencies.

About the TD Ready Challenge
Acting as a springboard for social innovation, TD established the TD Ready Challenge to identify and support scalable solutions to a specific issue identified within The Ready Commitment. In its inaugural year, the TD Ready Challenge encouraged organizations across North America to create innovative solutions to help increase income stability and give people the skills they need for the economy of the future. In total, TD awarded $10 million (CDN) for the 2018 Challenge.

About The Ready Commitment
TD has a long-standing commitment to enriching the lives of its customers, colleagues and communities. In March 2018, TD launched The Ready Commitment, a new multi-year program to help individuals and communities prosper. As part of The Ready Commitment, TD targets CDN $1 billion (US $775 million) in total by 2030 towards community giving in four areas critical to opening doors for an inclusive tomorrow – Financial Security, a more Vibrant Planet, Connected Communities and Better Health. Through The Ready Commitment, TD’s aspiration is to link business, products, services, and community giving to help people feel more confident – not just about their finances, but about their future and their ability to achieve their personal goals in a changing world. For further information, visit

For more information:
Rob Hindley
National Director of Marketing and Communications
(416) 360-4445 ext. 410

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