Tribes step in to fill a financial gap in Eastern Oregon

When Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation leaders realized many members didn’t have bank accounts or lines of credit, they put in place a new plan to improve financial literacy and help members obtain loans.

To do that, they launched Nixyaawii Community Financial Services, a one-stop source for a full range of financial services for the reservation’s nearly 3,000 residents. Nixyaawii Community Financial Services, which formally opened a year ago, is a community development financial institution, a nonprofit that delivers affordable lending.