A $2.6 million grant announced Tuesday by JPMorgan Chase & Co. is targeted to bringing affordable home ownership opportunities and small business support and financing, according to a release from Community Ventures.
The grant is being made through the company’s PRO Neighborhoods (Partnerships for Raising Opportunity in Neighborhoods) program.
The project involves Kentucky nonprofit organizations Community Ventures, Kentucky Highlands Investment Corp. and the Federation of Appalachian Enterprises.
The neighborhoods program is designed to give local organizations the flexibility to work together on community challenges in their city or region and develop financing options for projects that are unable to qualify for traditional loans, according to the release. The program consists of more than $15 million in grants to five programs nationwide that are dedicated to creating innovative and sustainable solutions to significant economic challenges in communities.
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In Lexington and Louisville, Community Ventures will focus on the Third and Midland area in east Lexington and the Russell/Cedar Street area of west Louisville. The project will provide affordable first- and second-mortgage loans to approximately 50 low-income residents. Homebuyer pre- and post-purchase counseling and education will also be offered.
Affordable loans will be available to at least 50 start-up and expanding businesses, which will create or retain an estimated 200 or more jobs across the project area. Development services, such as basic financial literacy, business planning and other training and technical assistance, will be provided to ensure the success of the resident business owners.
“It’s not solely the $2.6 million award that will allow change,” said Kevin Smith, president and CEO of Community Ventures. “It is also the money we can leverage as a result. Community Ventures has been able to take this grant and attract another $15 million to these projects from other sources.”