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Initiative launches Community Enterprise Fund

Cutting the ribbon 2

The N.C. Community Development Initiative will launch a new grant program June 1 to catalyze economic growth and job creation in low-income and distressed communities across North Carolina.

The Community Enterprise Fund will invest up to $100,000 for three years to help as many as 25 of North Carolina’s most effective  nonprofit community organizations implement strategic economic development plans that have potential for significant impact in the communities they serve.

“The program will support effective community-based enterprises – nonprofit organizations that are rooted in their local community, are entrepreneurial in their approach and are having a positive, measurable impact on economic development and prosperity in their community,” said Millie Brobston, the Initiative’s program officer for grant investments, who will direct the new program.

“North Carolina’s community economic development organizations have been leaders in creating economic growth in hard-hit communities for decades,” said Brobston. “The Community Enterprise Fund is a strategy for us to invest in what’s working to stabilize low-resource communities and for building new partnerships that will be successful in this new economic environment.”

The grant program is open to N.C. nonprofits that are using community economic development strategies. Applicants are asked to present their visions for their community and a multi-year business plan to address that vision and create meaningful change. The Initiative seeks to fund organizations that bring together partners and leverage community resources for greater impact and produce measurable outcomes. Grant recipients will receive training and technical assistance and access to a network of peer organizations in the Initiative’s portfolio.

Initial applications will be accepted June 1-July 9 at The Initiative will invite a select pool of the most promising applicants to submit full proposals with business plans by Aug. 10. Awards will be made by year-end.

The Initiative will host a webinar June 12 at 11 a.m. to provide details of the new fund and answer questions.

For more information, visit or contact Brobston at (919) 835-6000 or

The N.C. Community Development Initiative leads North Carolina’s collaborative community economic development effort, driving innovation, investment and action to create prosperous, sustainable communities. For more information, visit

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