The City of Birmingham has awarded more than $800,000 to seven area organizations whose missions are rooted in creating a more inclusive and resilient community. The BOLD funding program, which stands for Building Opportunities for Lasting Development, provides financial support to organizations and agencies that take creative, evidence-based approaches to advancing economic and community development in Birmingham.
“I am thrilled to continue funding local organizations through the BOLD program who work diligently to support our residents with innovative programming and resources,” said Birmingham Mayor Randall L. Woodfin. “An investment in these organizations is an investment in the future of Birmingham.”
Funding was allocated across six categories: small businesses; minority-, women-, and disadvantaged business enterprises (MWDBEs); workforce development; overcoming barriers; Birmingham’s neighborhoods; and data-driven Innovation.
“We invest in partners through the BOLD funding program because they serving our residents to improve quality of life and place, which is the groundwork for advancing economic opportunity in Birmingham’s 99 neighborhoods.,” said Coreata Houser, deputy director of the Department of Innovation and Economic Opportunity. “BOLD has supported more than 5,000 Birmingham residents and 2,000 small businesses since it began five years ago.”
The City Council approved funding for the new awardees on last week. Here are each of the organizations’ plans for moving forward:
- The Is-Able Center exists to enhance the quality of life for individuals with disabilities, their loved ones, and caregivers. The BOLD project supports workforce development and overcoming barriers for 60 Birmingham residents by providing employment training, stipends, wrap-around services, and financial management training. $87,050
- Momentum has worked for over 20 years to advance women leaders in Birmingham through its various programs. The BOLD project supports workforce development and overcoming barriers for minority-, women-, and disadvantaged business enterprises (MWDBEs) for 50 Birmingham residents through Momentum Works, an initiative that will provide professional leadership training, wrap-around services, and access to professional expert resources. $117,500
- Birthwell Partners is a woman-led 501(c)(3) organization that seeks to improve maternal and infant health – and by extension, overcoming economic barriers – for families in Birmingham’s neighborhoods. The BOLD project provides birth doula services, childbirth and parenting classes, and maternal health advocacy workshops to at least 80 Birmingham residents. The project also includes workforce development through BirthWell’s need-based work-study program, which will expand access to doula training for 3 Birmingham residents and offer continuing education to further develop the skillset of 10 community doulas working with Birmingham families. $90,400
- Diane’s Heart Inc. was started in Ensley and continues to hold events in the Ensley Entertainment District with the mission to help single moms rise above statistics of poverty by providing a support system and access to financial resources. BOLD funding is supporting the “She Knew There Was More” coaching and mentoring program for 30 women to provide intensive professional coaching, counseling and mentoring along with guidance on goal-setting and creating an execution strategy to reach those goals. $138,413
- MedsPLUS Consulting is an independent pharmacy and healthcare consulting firm in Birmingham. Through a community-centered healthcare service delivery model, they serve minority communities, particularly those who have been mistreated and marginalized by healthcare and government systems and continue to hold high levels of mistrust in healthcare professionals. The BOLD project will provide workforce development for 3 new Community Health Workers and provide diabetes prevention services to 60 Birmingham residents to help overcome barriers to employment opportunities. $104,695
- Urban Impact is an organization in Birmingham’s Historic 4th Avenue Business District dedicated to bolstering Black businesses, enabling them to thrive in the evolving local economy. This project supports the Legacy Entrepreneurship Program, a 6-week course for 24 legacy businesses to be trained in succession planning, safeguarding the legacies of long-established businesses, and facilitating the intergenerational transfer of wealth and business ownership in Black communities. $150,000
- Bundles of Hope Diaper Bank cares for the community by meeting the basic, essential, monthly need of Birmingham families. The BOLD project will help overcome barriers for 1,500 Birmingham residents to economic opportunities by distributing 100,000 diapers, 160,000 wipes, and 100,000 period products. $120,000
With these seven awardees, BOLD will have funded 50 organizations since it began with $4.6 million and for a total capital investment of $13.4 million into Birmingham. The BOLD application review includes an interdepartmental process across the City of Birmingham and Birmingham City Council, and each organization receiving funds must provide updates on performance for an assessment and evaluation throughout the engagement.