Bank of America today announced more than $1.3 million in grants to 48 Phoenix nonprofits that will help drive economic opportunity and upward mobility for individuals and families and put them on a path toward stability and success.
The local nonprofits receiving funding will help address two key factors in improving economic mobility: basic needs fundamental to building life-long stability, including access to food, shelter and health services, and access to educational and workforce development services building pathways to employment, including providing resources to rebuild careers that may have been impacted by the pandemic.
While the Phoenix region is experiencing general economic recovery, recent studies show a long road ahead to regain jobs lost during the coronavirus shutdowns, to maintain protections for renters and to retrain individuals into new careers, according to George W. Hammond, a University of Arizona economist.
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“The strategic investment into immediate short-term and longer-term needs has been key to ensuring everyone in our community can progress as society begins to safely reopen,” said Benito Almanza, President, Bank of America Phoenix. “By investing in Phoenix’s incredible network of nonprofits, Bank of America provides philanthropic capital to help advance economic and social progress, enabling our community to succeed.”
Bank of America’s announcement builds on a previous $1 million grant to Arizona State University to drive workforce development efforts supporting students of color and build a pipeline that will strengthen and enhance today’s workforce. These investments are part of the company’s commitment to responsible growth as it works to improve the financial lives of individuals and families, and complements its broader focus on racial equality and economic opportunity.
“Be A Leader Foundation is incredibly proud to work side by side with Bank of America in providing support to our students and families as they strive to continue their education and create systemic change within their families and communities,” said Melissa Trujillo, President and CEO of Be A Leader Foundation and one of the recent grant recipients. “The pandemic has dramatically underscored the impact a student’s social-economic status can have on educational outcomes. Increasing equal access to higher education, therefore, is one of our greatest levers to increase social mobility and healthy communities. This investment in our programs will allow them to pursue educational dreams that will help sustain their families and the healthy, vibrant Phoenix community we all hope for.”
In addition to Be A Leader, other grantees include St. Joseph the Worker, Chicano Por La Causa Inc and Live and Learn Program, organizations that have ensured underserved communities continue to have access to employment and educational opportunities.
“Bank of America’s investment helps us continue working toward connecting Valley job seekers to quality jobs,” said Brent Downs, Executive Director at St. Joseph the Worker. “While staying open during the pandemic, we have been able to connect individuals and families to resources and employment opportunities which lead to stability and economic self-sufficiency. We appreciate the continued support to empower hard-working people in our community.”
Additional background about Bank of America’s Charitable Foundation giving can be found here.