Communities across the country are increasingly managing issues that can stretch, and sometimes overwhelm, their available resources. The health crisis underscored this when, as millions of people lost their jobs, demands at food banks skyrocketed and community health clinics and local hospitals became frontline triage centers. These events also amplified disparities in health care access, employment and economic opportunity for communities of color — issues that have persisted for generations.
For local communities to thrive, especially those with vulnerable populations, more affordable housing is needed, greater access to healthcare must be provided, pathways to education must be made available, and resources to support local entrepreneurs increased. Faced with urgent needs in the communities where they operate, the private sector is increasingly moving to find ways to support community needs as part of day-to-day operations, driven by the knowledge that businesses can only be successful if the communities they serve are also successful. Businesses, which rely on healthy communities for their own prosperity, must play a big part in driving solutions.
Finding new ways to provide help local communities need
Financial services companies are innovating new approaches to mobilize capital and provide support for challenges ranging from the lack of affordable housing to too few opportunities for career development, all while supporting business goals. It’s an approach that reflects a growing recognition that the values of any company should include looking out for everyone’s needs, not just those of shareholders.
Through sustainable financing efforts, Bank of America is working on multiple fronts to closely tie the long-term sustainability of the communities it operates in to its global business strategy.