Local nonprofits, such as Dress for Success Charlotte and ourBRIDGE for KIDS, are helping address the region’s issues around both economic opportunity for women, as well as support for refugee and immigrant children.
For their work in Charlotte communities to advance economic mobility, Dress for Success Charlotte and ourBRIDGE for KIDS were named the 2021 Bank of America Neighborhood Builders® awardees. Each organization received a $200,000 grant over two years, comprehensive leadership training for the executive director and an emerging leader on topics ranging from increasing financial sustainability, human capital management and strategic storytelling, joins a network of peer organizations across the U.S. and gets the opportunity to access capital to expand their impact. The program continues to be the nation’s largest investment into nonprofit leadership development.
Dress for Success Charlotte
Dress for Success Charlotte empowers women to achieve economic independence by providing a network of support, professional attire and development tools to help women thrive in work and in life. A large majority – approximately 86 percent – of clients who are referred to Dress for Success Charlotte are single and head of household.
“The Neighborhood Builders grant will help us reach even more women across our region and provide them with critical technology resources they have so desperately needed throughout the pandemic,” said Kerry Barr O’Connor, executive director of Dress for Success Charlotte. “Through this partnership we will expand what we are currently doing to help women secure employment as a means of achieving upward economic mobility and offer our wrap-around approach to help them thrive in both work and in life.”
ourBRIDGE for KIDS
ourBRIDGE for KIDS is the only non-faith-based organization in Charlotte and surrounding areas that attends to the academic and socio-emotional needs of refugee and immigrant children and their families. The inclusive afterschool and summer programs provide a happy, nurturing freeing space for ELL (English Language Learners) students as they adjust to their new home in the United States.
“This partnership with Bank of America will help catapult our efforts to ensuring children arriving for the first time in our community have a safe space to go after school,” said Sil Ganzo, founder and executive director of ourBRIDGE for KIDS. "Starting a new life in a new country is not easy; our programs support the families in their transition and help their children process the changes around them.”
Support from Bank of America is helping these organizations take another step forward and continue to impact their community. In Charlotte, Bank of America has supported 28 nonprofits through its Neighborhood Builders program, investing over $7 million into local organizations. This is just one example of how Bank of America deploys capital in communities, builds cross-sector partnerships and promotes socioeconomic progress as part of its approach to responsible growth.
“We are committed to supporting nonprofits experiencing increased demands and in need of additional resources as our community continues to grow,” said Kieth Cockrell, president, Bank of America Charlotte. “Dress for Success Charlotte and ourBridge for KIDS are helping women and families chart a path toward stability and economic opportunity. We are proud to support these two organizations to increase their community impact.”
Working with organizations like Dress for Success Charlotte and ourBridge for KIDS, Bank of America is providing resources to helps nonprofit partners advance economic mobility.