With a $160,000 grant from the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation (WRF), Rural LISC is building the capacity of our community partners serving persistent poverty regions in Arkansas through our recently launched Road to Capacity Initiative. The initiative is designed to increase the capacity of our community partners working in persistent poverty areas - a classification for counties in the United States that have had a relatively high rate of poverty over a long period. This work is critical, as 85% of counties designated as “persistent poverty” are located in rural areas.
Through this initiative, Rural LISC selected four Arkansas-based partners to undergo our “Cap Mapping” assessment, which gauges each partner’s strengths and growth opportunities in asset management, board development, community connections, financial management, and real estate development. Rural LISC staff will use each partner’s Cap Mapping results to develop an advancement plan that outlines the organization’s challenges and strengths, and identifies strategies to address the challenges and leverage the strengths to build organizational and financial capacity through project or program development.
Thanks to the support from WRF, Rural LISC staff will present the advancement plans to the four partners in Arkansas. Once the partner organizations approve the plans, implementation will begin. The final objective of each plan is to position the organization to undertake a physical development or programmatic endeavor that will increase the overall health of the organization, including improved revenue generation.
LISC is proud to recognize the continued support of WRF, which has invested nearly $2 million in our work across the Arkansas Delta over the past 25 years. Thanks to its continued support, Rural LISC will build the capacity of community development organizations in Arkansas to improve the quality of life for residents living in persistent poverty areas.
WRF pursues its mission to improve the lives of Arkansans through strategic grant making and partnerships, and using its voice to help close the economic and educational gaps that leave too many families in persistent poverty.