In this week’s Stanford Social Innovation Review, LISC CEO Maurice A. Jones takes a close look at the outcomes from one of the largest single-city community development efforts in the country, the decade-long New Communities Program (NCP) in Chicago. Most notable, Jones writes, is data on community networks and how closely they connect to local growth and opportunity. The evidence confirms what community developers have long assumed but previously never proven: a durable local infrastructure of nonprofits, businesses, and other stakeholders is able to both attract and absorb capital in ways that measurably improve residents’ quality of life.
LISC CEO Maurice A. Jones takes a hopeful look at the future in an interview with Philanthropy News Digest, pointing to the wealth of untapped talent in American communities as evidence that there are gains yet to come. "The question is, what do we do as a society to ensure that these people are able to fulfill their promise?” For LISC, that includes a range of local investments, from employment skills training to entrepreneurship to affordable housing development, all of which help expand economic opportunity and support a good quality of life.
This is AmeriCorps week, a national celebration of community service and the extraordinary program that nurtures local talent and fuels transformation. LISC AmeriCorps is at the heart of our $1 billion in grants to community-based organizations, and of our commitment to building impassioned local—and national—leadership to show the way.
In an interview for “Business of Giving”, a New York radio show on trends in philanthropy, Maurice Jones talks strategy, compassion and how our new partnership with Facebook is a cutting-edge conduit for bringing private sector dollars to communities in need.
Let’s ask ourselves: what could the 43 million Americans living in poverty accomplish if they had a plausible path to the middle class? How much more competitive would our country be if we unleashed the full economic potential of every neighborhood and community. During my first few weeks as LISC CEO, I have had the privilege of seeing my team working with organizations and individuals across the country in pursuit of these aspirations.