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Partners in Action

Foundations, financial-service businesses, peer nonprofits, federal agencies and academic institutions  our partners are vital to our success and to transforming communities nationwide.

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Support from the Kresge Foundation

Arts and culture-based strategies have long occupied a central role in community development. Across the country, many NeighborWorks organizations have used the arts to engage residents, build community, create awareness, forge partnerships, beautify public spaces, honor history and culture, revitalize neighborhoods, and promote economic growth.

With support from the Kresge Foundation, NeighborWorks America has embarked on a year-long planning process to learn from this work and explore the role of art, culture, creativity and placemaking in community development. The goals of this efforts are to:

  • Better understand how the arts can contribute to making vibrant communities that provide equitable opportunities for people to thrive.
  • Identify ways to leverage NeighborWorks America’s unique strengths to support our network and the broader field in adopting and implementing creative practices.

These recommendations will be developed with extensive input from key stakeholders, including NeighborWorks staff, network organizations, and partners throughout the arts and community development fields. If you’re engaged in projects that have successfully leveraged art to advance community development goals, or have suggestions for how NeighborWorks could support these types of efforts, please let us know!

An interview with Wells Fargo Housing Foundation

Martin Sundquist, executive director of the Wells Fargo Housing FoundationThrough this important partnership, Wells Fargo has directly supported several NeighborWorks network organizations and greatly enhanced the impact they have in the communities that they serve.

We've asked Martin Sundquist, executive director of the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation, a few questions about why Wells Fargo supports NeighborWorks.

Why is philanthropy important to Wells Fargo?
Wells Fargo believes we can only be as successful as the customers and communities we serve. As one of the top corporate philanthropists with more than $281 million donated to nonprofits in 2016, including the most generous team member giving effort for eight consecutive years according to the United Way, we focus our corporate giving on diversity and inclusion, environmental sustainability, and economic empowerment that includes our support of NeighborWorks America.

Why is a relationship with NeighborWorks America important to Wells Fargo?
We have learned over time, working together through public-private collaborations that we can make an even bigger impact in revitalizing neighborhoods and creating sustainable homeowners when we team with nonprofits that have the scale and skill to deepen our reach in local communities.

For instance with LIFT programs, Wells Fargo has invested more than $336 million in support of the effort now in 50 communities that have created more than 13,150 homeowners over five years by offering homebuyer education and down payment assistance grants.

By working together we have found that we have been very effective in engaging LIFT clients with homebuyer education that sets them up for success over the long-term. Also, we have found that the majority of LIFT program homeowners represent low- and moderate-income households so collaborative effort is making a big impact on serving the people the program intended to serve.

Why has Wells Fargo chosen to make such a significant investment in rural communities?
We believe providing support for rural communities is vitally important to our country and encourage other organizations to support the effort. Economic empowerment challenges and opportunities are not solely an urban issue. That’s why we believe it is important to support the NeighborWorks Training Institute through scholarships. Wells Fargo has provided scholarships to send more than 2,000 community development professionals to NTI.

Our support also includes the NeighborWorks Rural Initiative — so under-served communities can have access to credit counselors and affordable homeownership. It is impressive more than 100 organizations in the NeighborWorks network participate in the NeighborWorks Rural Initiative. Rural initiatives are a cornerstone of our commitment to sustainable housing and we’ve contributed $1.8 million over two years to more than 20 projects focused on rural communities. Wells Fargo also has a presence in more than 100 communities that have a populations of less than 100,000 people across the country so we appreciate opportunities to work together like on more than two dozen projects we have supported over the past two years to make even bigger impact when we can join together to support local rural development efforts.
 

Recent partner projects

Making rural homes safe and sound
In rural and small town communities across America, rehab and weatherization programs are a critical resource for families struggling to stay in safe and affordable homes.
Achieving Excellence overview
Achieving Excellence is a performance-driven program for seasoned executive directors and senior staff of nonprofit organizations. Through NeighborWorks America's collaboration with Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government, participants take their skills and knowledge to a level they may not have thought possible.
What is Financial Capability?
It’s the ability to navigate life’s events. It’s more than just setting financial goals...it’s actually building toward them.

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