The nonprofits were selected for their work in the Seattle area to address issues fundamental to economic mobility, specifically the WCCDA’s efforts to promote a vibrant neighborhood and high quality of life for residents in White Center and OneAmerica’s work advancing the fundamental principles of democracy by building power within immigrant communities.
Here’s more from a press release:
As an awardee, each organization receives a $200,000 grant, a year of leadership training for the executive director and an emerging leader at the organization, a network of peer organizations across the U.S., and the opportunity to access capital to expand their impact. Over the past 15 years, Bank of America has invested $240 million in 49 communities through Neighborhood Builders, partnering with more than 1,000 nonprofits and helping more than 2,000 nonprofit leaders strengthen their leadership skills.
“The tremendous growth our region has enjoyed has not benefitted communities equally. Rising real estate and staffing costs are impacting many small business owners in the region, and many of our immigrant neighbors and communities of color continue to face barriers to stable employment and economic mobility that is the American dream,” said Kerri Schroeder, Seattle market president, Bank of America. “Non-profits like OneAmerica and White Center CDA are on the front lines addressing issues of equity, economics and education that are critical to removing those barriers. We’re proud that the Neighborhood Builders program not only provides funding, but also helps develop emerging nonprofit executives who are taking transformative and successful approaches in advancing equity and inclusion in our community.”
This year, Bank of America recognizes White Center CDA for its efforts to promote a vibrant neighborhood and high quality of life for residents in White Center through the development of authentic leadership opportunities, small business support and preservation, and community-led neighborhood initiatives that help address basic needs across this diverse community.
“Bank of America’s investment helps us build our support for small businesses owned by immigrants, women and people of color and to eliminate the achievement and opportunity gap for children of color,” said Sili Savusa, White Center CDA executive director. “Bank of America shares our vision of a community in which people of all incomes and backgrounds can share in the opportunity and prosperity of our region. Through this support, we are excited to continue building and expanding a vibrant, economically diverse community.
Our other recipient, OneAmerica, advances the fundamental principles of democracy by building power within immigrant communities in collaboration with key allies, bringing forward the voices of those most marginalized in society due to immigration status, language ability, race, ethnicity, income, gender and religious identity.
“Displacement due to rising land values and rent is one of the most pressing issues facing immigrant and refugee business owners in our region,” said Rich Stolz, OneAmerica executive director. “At the same time, under-represented communities are working to shape a workforce development system that better meets the needs of individuals facing barriers to employment and opportunity, like language access, transferring foreign credentials, and building marketable skills in a rapidly changing economy. OneAmerica will use these funds to invest in our staff and expand our capacity to develop a series of policy briefs on strategies to strengthen state and regional workforce development systems and to ensure that those most impacted by these issues are shaping solutions grounded in their aspirations and experience.”
Since 2004, through its Neighborhood Builders program, Bank of America has partnered with 30 nonprofits in Seattle, investing $6 million to provide financial education and economic mobility opportunities within the Seattle area. The invitation-only program is highly competitive, and leading members of the community participated in a collaborative selection process to identify this year’s awardees. Examples of the leadership training topics include human capital management, increasing financial sustainability, and storytelling. Neighborhood Builders is just one example of how Bank of America deploys capital in communities, builds cross-sector partnerships, and promotes socioeconomic progress as part of its approach to responsible growth.