Community First October Newsletter

  • October 5, 2021

Project Spotlight: Prairie Haus

Congratulations to Wisconsin Housing Preservation Corp. (WHPC) and Home of Our Own on the grand opening of Prairie Haus in New Glarus, Wisconsin. Prairie Haus provides 40 units of affordable housing for a growing workforce population in addition to independent living apartments for residents with disabilities. FHLBank Chicago awarded a $570,000 Affordable Housing Program grant to WHPC through Johnson Bank.


Capacity-Building Grant Program Update

FHLBank Chicago accepted applications for its 2021 Community First® Capacity-Building Grant Program between August 2 and September 3. Seventeen nonprofit lenders submitted applications in partnership with 14 member institutions requesting more than $700,000 in grant funds. FHLBank Chicago requested additional information from select applicants and expects to announce award recipients in November.


Deadline for Community Support Statements Approaching

Most FHLBank Chicago members are required to submit a Community Support Statement (CSS) to the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) every two years. The 2021 Community Support Program (CSP) opened on April 1, 2021. Members subject to review must submit their CSS by October 29, 2021 using the FHFA Online CSP System. If you have any questions about completing and submitting your 2021 CSS, please contact Community Investment staff at


2021 Downpayment Plus® Program Update

The 2021 Downpayment Plus (DPP®) and Downpayment Plus Advantage® (DPP Advantage ®) programs opened on January 19, 2021, and continue to provide members easy-to-access downpayment and closing cost assistance to help their income-eligible borrowers achieve homeownership. As of the third quarter, we have awarded $15.43 million in DPP grants to over 2,600 households. We expect to open the 2022 DPP programs on January 18, 2022. Please stay tuned for more details.

FHLBank Chicago Receives Wintrust Partners in Innovation Award

FHLBank Chicago is proud to receive the Wintrust Partners in Innovation Award from Mercy Housing Lakefront in recognition of our support for Major Jenkins Apartments. Located in Chicago’s Uptown neighborhood, Major Jenkins Apartments provides 156 units of affordable housing for formerly homeless individuals. FHLBank Chicago awarded a $900,000 Affordable Housing Program grant for this project to Mercy Housing Lakefront and Associated Bank.


FHLBanks Sponsor OFN Annual Conference

The FHLBanks are proud to sponsor the Opportunity Finance Network (OFN) Annual Conference. OFN is the national association of community development financial institutions (CDFIs) and this year’s conference will explore how CDFIs help to combat inequality and drive a more just economic recovery. CDFIs certified by the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s CDFI Fund have been able to become FHLBank members since 2010. To learn more, please reference our information sheet on CDFIs and FHLBank membership.


Upcoming Events:


October 4 – 8 | 2021 Housing Action Illinois Virtual Conference

October 19 – 21 | 2021 OFN Virtual Conference

Contact Us

Please direct all media inquiries to:

Casey Reidy 
Director, Communications

Heather Bockstruck
Assistant Director, Communications