Propel Nonprofits was created from the merger of Nonprofits Assistance Fund and Map for Nonprofits.
Since 1979, MAP for Nonprofits has worked to strengthen the Minnesota nonprofit community by connecting organizations to sound governance, strategy, and finance and accounting practices. In 1979, a group of Twin Cities community leaders proposed sharing the management talents enjoyed by the for-profit business sector with nonprofit organizations to help nonprofits meet growing community needs. Management Assistance Project later became MAP for Nonprofits, and transformed to a staff-model consulting and service group. The Minnesota nonprofit, social, and philanthropic sector relied upon MAP as a trusted resource. MAP worked with hundreds of organizations and thousands of individuals each year, building their capacity to govern, lead, identify strategy, and operate organizations effectively. Through consulting and training, its experienced staff members delivered a distinctive mix of services to strengthen the sector and communities.
Nonprofits Assistance Fund was incorporated as an independent nonprofit in 1998. For the previous 18 years, the loan funds and programs had operated as a program of The Minneapolis Foundation. In 2000, Nonprofits Assistance Fund opened a financial center for nonprofits with the goal of providing extensive training as well as loan programs. Nonprofits Assistance Fund was certified as a Community Development Financial Institution by the US Department of the Treasury CDFI Fund in 2001. In 2005 Nonprofits Assistance Fund changed its name from Community Loan Technologies. Over the years the organization has housed several loan funds, including the Minnesota Nonprofits Assistance Fund® (MNAF), the Minnesota Primary Care Loan Fund, and the Working Capital Fund. In 2008 the programs were expanded to include special initiatives, consulting, and online learning. Nonprofits Assistance Fund program development and loan fund capacity have grown substantially thanks to the support of foundations, financial institutions, business, and federal and state agencies.