We were founded in 1892 by ten leaders of the Jewish immigrant community on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. These friends pooled $95 to create an interest-free loan fund and made loans starting at 50 cents.
Today, we continue that tradition of making interest-free loans available to New Yorkers who need immediate help or want to invest in their futures, but cannot afford or do not qualify for commercial credit.
HFLS maintains a 99% repayment rate. Since our founding 125 years ago, HFLS has provided over $300 million to more than 875,000 borrowers. As our loans are repaid, the capital is lent out again and again, helping more people and multiplying the impact over time.
HFLS is unique. There are no other organizations in New York City that provide an array of interest-free loans to low- and moderate-income people facing financial emergencies.
Biblical References to Interest-Free Lending
“If you lend money to My people, even to the poor among you , do not act toward them as a creditor; you shall not charge them interest.” – Exodus 22:24
“You shall not lend him your money at interest, or give him your food for profit.” – Leviticus 25:37