By The Arkansas Delta Informer Staff – Hope Credit Union (HOPE), the nation’s leading Black- and women-owned community development financial institution (CDFI), announced plans to provide $1 billion financing to improve lives and close the racial and gender opportunity gaps in Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee. HOPE projects that the investment will benefit more than 150,000 people over the next 10 years.
According to the Jackson, Miss.-based CDFI, which has bank branches in central Arkansas and West Memphis, the commitment was catalyzed by a recent $92.6 million investment in HOPE through the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Emergency Capital Investment Program.
Structured as regulatory capital, each dollar of federal funds allows HOPE to attract up to $10 in deposits. HOPE will use the ECIP funds to import deposits into places that lack local resources needed to finance businesses, homebuyers, affordable rental housing, healthcare facilities, schools, nonprofit service providers and other assets needed for families and communities to prosper.
“People in the Deep South are incredibly resilient, and can do anything, if they have the tools,” said HOPE CEO Bill Bynum. “With this historic investment by the Treasury, HOPE will ensure that for families, entrepreneurs and communities in the Delta, in the Black Belt and in rural areas and inner cities throughout the Deep South, access to affordable financial tools will no longer be a barrier to their success.”
One of the nation’s largest CDFIs, which under U.S. Treasury rules provide lending and financial services to distressed communities across the U.S., HOPE has generated more than $3.6 billion in financing that has benefitted nearly 2 million people in Arkansas, Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee. Through its Hope Enterprise Corporation, Hope Credit Union and Hope Policy Institute, the Delta-focused CFDI provides financial services and engages in advocacy to mitigate the extent to which factors such as race, gender, birthplace and wealth limit one’s ability to prosper.
To learn more about HOPE and its $1 billion commitment, click here.