HOPE Matters: January 2019
HOPE Awarded National Juntos Avanzamos Designation by Inclusiv for Work to Expand Financial Access to Hispanic Communities
HOPE is the first Mississippi-based credit union – and the first operating in Arkansas and Tennessee – to be awarded the prestigious national Juntos Avanzamos designation by Inclusiv, an association with a mission to help low- and moderate-income people and communities achieve financial independence through credit unions. HOPE received the designation based on its commitment to financial inclusion. As part of its work to serve the Hispanic community, HOPE has hired bilingual staff and translated materials to make the credit union’s products, services, and financial education resources more culturally relevant. HOPE associates in these communities also are connecting with local organizations and events to help build relationships with Hispanic members. HOPE will hold ceremonies in honor of the designation this spring in Little Rock, Ark., and Memphis, Tenn. “This designation recognizes the groundbreaking work you and your team have historically done to meet the needs of low-income consumers in general and of the Hispanic community in particular. This is what financial inclusion is all about, and you are leading the way,” wrote Inclusiv in the award letter. Launched nationally in September 2015, the Juntos Avanzamos program now has a presence in 23 states, serving more than 5.3 million consumers and delivering responsible financial products at over 684 community branches.
New Project Opens Door for Birmingham Boys & Girls Club to Serve More Youth
HOPE joined former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Birmingham, Ala., Mayor Randall L. Hoodfin to break ground on a new building project for the A.G. Gaston Boys & Girls Club. HOPE provided $9 million in New Market Tax Credits as part of the financing for the clubhouse project. Rice, a Birmingham native who helped lead the fundraising effort, said the project gives youth “the opportunity to lead healthier lives.” HOPE Senior Vice President for Community and Economic Development Kendra Key told the crowd gathered at the December ceremony that the project represented HOPE’s first major investment in Alabama after its 2017 expansion into the state. The project will increase the organization’s capacity to offer tutoring and mentoring services to more youth. Currently, the facility serves some 1,500 children from challenged neighborhoods across Birmingham and Jefferson County. “HOPE supports community facilities because we know the transformative power that facilities like these have in inspiring and empowering young people, especially those who may need an extra boost to realize their fullest potential.”
HOPE Launches Yearlong Community Celebration to Mark 25th Anniversary
HOPE began in 1994 with an audacious goal: “To Transform the Economy of the Delta.” Over the past 25 years, HOPE’s footprint has expanded across the Deep South, but our core mission is unchanged. This year, HOPE will recognize its Silver Anniversary during annual member celebrations, community meetings and across various digital platforms, reflecting our key partnerships, lessons learned and our goals for the future. The theme is “When We Hope Together.” The “we” in the tagline is the collective us — our members, our partners, our community leaders, our funders and entire communities. It includes all who are committed to advancing opportunity in a region too long scarred by pervasive poverty and a fragile economic base. The anniversary campaign is an opportunity for HOPE to highlight the people and places across the Deep South that have been transformed by access to financial services and community development investment, and to inspire others to dare to hope for more economic equity.
Facility Financed with NMTCs Brings Jobs, Increased Revenue to La. Community
A new facility, financed in part by HOPE, provides long-term care options to families in Tangipahoa Parish, La., and brings jobs and increased tax revenue to its community. A ribbon-cutting and open house for Camelot Community Care was held Nov. 15, 2018, in Ponchatoula, La. The event brought together the facility operators, mayoral and legislative leaders, local residents and HOPE. CommCare Corporation and CCI, two of the largest operators of long-term care facilities in Louisiana, partnered to build and operate the facility, which replaces an older one that had been located in Kentwood, La. The new skilled nursing facility will annually serve up to 136 patients, most of whom are lower-income individuals. In his remarks, Jim Tucker, president and CEO of CommCare Corp., shared how HOPE immediately began work to secure financing for the project that is located in a rural, distressed area.
Expanding a Business on the Mississippi Gulf Coast
Dr. Brandy Womack believes veterinary medicine is about more than just the animals – it is about the bond owners have with their animals. That’s why she wanted to ensure her patients had access to the best possible treatment and facility.
Register for ‘Rural Places, Rural Spaces: Closing Financial Service Gaps in Persistent Poverty America’
Jerome Powell, Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, will deliver remarks to a gathering of banking, philanthropy, impact investing and community development leaders during “Rural Places, Rural Spaces: Closing Financial Service Gaps in Persistent Poverty America,” a policy forum hosted by Hope Enterprise Corporation, to be held at Mississippi Valley State University. The forum, set for Feb. 12, will engage participants in action-oriented dialogue around addressing the financial service gaps that limit economic mobility for many rural people and places. The forum is designed to stimulate solutions for communities that exist on the economy’s edge, where the development degree of difficulty is high, and where financial resources are limited.
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