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LISC is celebrating a $5 million grant from JPMorgan Chase that will help a collaborative of local community development financial institutions spur growth and opportunity in Philadelphia’s Kensington neighborhood.
The grant will support the equitable development work of the Kensington del Corazón Collaborative, which includes LISC and high-impact local partners Impact Services, Impact Loan Fund, FINANTA, and Community First Fund. The partners are combining their expertise and capital to offer loans and other support that cultivates local entrepreneurs, attracts new businesses, and finances redevelopment of mixed-use properties along the Kensington Avenue commercial corridor. In addition, the collaborative will offer coaching/technical assistance for business owners and provide pathways to homeownership and affordable rental housing for residents.
“This is about fueling resident-led development and ownership in a neighborhood under-served by traditional lending,” said Andrew Frishkoff, executive director of Philadelphia LISC. “Together, we can help the community create a local economic engine and greater self-determination.”
The JPMorgan Chase grant is part of the bank’s PRO Neighborhoods initiative, a $125 million, five-year commitment to provide communities with the capital and tools they need to support locally-driven solutions for reviving distressed neighborhoods across the U.S. Part of this initiative is an annual competition aimed at sparking collaboration among community development financial institutions (CDFIs)—lenders, like LISC, that provide affordable financing to promote economic opportunity for underserved communities. The goal is to support and incentivize these organizations to pool their resources and expand lending for comprehensive, holistic strategies to close the opportunity gap in neighborhoods across the country.
This year, the PRO Neighborhoods competition focused on proposals tied to an equitable neighborhood development plan that included a data-driven approach, strong resident engagement and building the local capacity to sustain longevity. To date, JPMorgan Chase has hosted five competitions supporting 25 collaboratives representing more than 70 CDFIs across the country.