NEW YORK, Dec. 16, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) has announced grants to 47 community organizations as part of its federal Social Innovation Fund award to establish and expand Financial Opportunity Centers in 10 metropolitan areas. The grants are expected to help more than 25,000 families find jobs, reduce inappropriate debt, gain financial literacy and build assets.
The Corporation for National and Community Service, which administers the new Social Innovation Fund, awarded LISC $4.2 million to help low-income residents secure their financial future. LISC is matching that with private funds, and recently conducted an RFP process to identify community-based partners with the capacity to implement the program. That includes local nonprofits in Chicago, Cincinnati, Detroit, Duluth, Houston, Indianapolis, Providence/Woonsocket, the San Francisco Bay Area, San Diego and the Twin Cities.
LISC's SIF grants—which average $144,000 and range from $380,000 to $100,000—will be used to support staffing and training for the financial counselors who operate the program.
"Thanks to the Social Innovation Fund, more struggling families will have the chance to stabilize their financial outlook and create their own opportunities for growth," commented Michael Rubinger, LISC president and CEO. "Financial Opportunity Centers have taken the blueprint for long-term financial planning that is common among more affluent individuals and tailored it to the specific needs of low- and moderate-income families," he said.
The Social Innovation Fund, authorized under the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act, is an innovative new federal program that addresses major challenges confronting communities by growing high-impact nonprofit organizations delivering proven solutions. It targets millions in public-private funds to expand effective community solutions across three issue areas: economic opportunity, healthy futures, and youth development and school support. This work will directly impact thousands of low-income families and create a catalog of proven approaches that can be replicated in communities across the country. For more information on the Social Innovation Fund, visit NationalService.gov/Innovation.
Financial Opportunity Centers are part of LISC's comprehensive Building Sustainable Communities initiative to help low-income residents transform their distressed neighborhoods into places of choice and opportunity. The Centers are created through local collaborations with community-based nonprofits. They bundle employment training/placement, financial literacy and public benefits support to help disadvantaged families improve their quality of life and plan for the future.
"The implications of that are significant, both for the families who have the chance to raise their standards of living and for the communities in which they live," Rubinger noted. "Local businesses, neighborhood schools, community safety, housing stability and a whole range of other institutions and issues all benefit from a more economically secure base of residents who are hopeful about their future."
LISC currently supports 33 Financial Opportunity Centers in low-income communities across the country. LISC's 47 SIF grantees include:
The Cara Program
Central States SER
Greater Southwest Development Corporation
Humboldt Park Social Services
Instituto del Progreso Latino
Jane Addams Hull House
Jane Addams Resource Corporation
North Lawndale Employment Network
Greater Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky
Santa Maria Community Services
Urban League of Greater Cincinnati
Lighthouse of Oakland County
Oakland Livingston Human Service Agency
Operation ABLE of Michigan
SER Metro-Detroit Jobs for Progress
Southwest Housing Solutions
Community Action Duluth
Alliance for Multicultural Community Services
SER Jobs for Progress-Texas Gulf Coast
United Way of Greater Houston-Bay Area Service Center
Volunteers of America, Texas
Flanner House of Indianapolis
Hawthorne Community Center
John H. Boner Community Center
Mary Rigg Neighborhood Center
Shepherd Community, Inc.
Southeast Community Services
CommonBond Communities Career Advantage Services
Communidades Latinas Unidas En Servicio
Emerge Community Development
Lutheran Social Services
Project for Pride in Living
Dorcas Place Adult and Family Learning Center
Family Resources Community Action
Providence Housing Authority
Home Start, Inc.
International Rescue Committee
North County Life Line
San Diego Housing Commission
San Francisco Bay Area
Merritt Community College
Sacred Heart Community Service
For details about each grantee's program, please visit http://www.lisc.org/2011_sif_awardees.
LISC combines corporate, government and philanthropic resources to help nonprofit community development corporations revitalize distressed neighborhoods. Since 1980, LISC has raised more than $9.7 billion to build or rehab more than 271,000 affordable homes and develop 40 million square feet of retail, community and educational space nationwide. LISC support has leveraged $31.1 billion in total development activity. For more information, visit www.lisc.org.
SOURCE Local Initiatives Support Corporation