The nation’s second largest banking institution announced Thursday that a Wilmington non-profit will be the first recipient of a grant awarded to only 40 organizations across the country.
Bank of America is launching its Neighborhood Champions program in Wilmington, naming Kids Making It as its inaugural awardee.
According to a news release, Neighborhood Champions supports the role strong nonprofit leaders play in advancing economic mobility, and is an extension of the bank’s signature philanthropic initiative, Neighborhood Builders, the largest corporate philanthropic investment in nonprofit leadership in the country.
In addition to Wilmington, Bank of America will bring the program to 40 communities across the U.S. this fall as part of its commitment to investing in the long-term health of communities.
As part of the program, Kids Making It will receive $50,000 in grant support and an opportunity for engagement in virtual leadership training delivered by experts in the nonprofit sector.
Kids Making It is a nonprofit woodworking program that teaches valuable vocational, entrepreneurial and life skills to at-risk, low income and disadvantaged youth.
“We are honored to have been chosen as the inaugural recipient of the Neighborhood Champions award,” said Jimmy Pierce, Executive Director of Kids Making It. “We are at significant inflection points with our new Skilled Trades Program and our Apprentice Program, and the flexible funding from this grant will enable us to invest resources where it is most needed to help us to move to the next level in our growth. Additionally, the virtual leadership training is priceless; everyone on our leadership team is looking forward to increasing our leadership skills and program sustainability through this unique opportunityto learn from nonprofit experts.”
The Neighborhood Champions program is by invitation-only for nonprofits who are poised to take their work to the next level, according to the news release. Leading members of the community participated in a collaborative selection process to identify this year’s awardee.
“We’re thrilled to bring the Neighborhood Champions program to Coastal NC,” said Derek Cohen, Bank of America Market President for Coastal NC. “Through flexible funding and leadership resources, partners like Kids Making It have the power to plan strategically for growth and long-term sustainability, and we look forward to seeing how this investment helps them make even greater strides to empower young people across our communities.”