Program Provides $400,000 in Flexible Funding and Leadership Skills Development Training to Advance Economic Mobility in the Inland Empire
Neighborhood Partnership Housing Services (NPHS) and Court Appointed Special Advocates (C.A.S.A.) of San Bernardino County have been named as the 2020 Bank of America Neighborhood Builders® awardees in the Inland Empire. The nonprofits were selected for their work to address issues fundamental to economic mobility, specifically providing affordable housing and support services to underserved communities and pathways for foster youth to education.
As an awardee, each organization receives a $200,000 grant, a year of leadership training for the executive director and an emerging leader on topics ranging from strategic storytelling to human capital management, as well as a network of peer organizations across the U.S., and the opportunity to access capital to expand their impact.
“As we consider the challenges that Inland Empire communities are facing – from the health crisis brought on by the coronavirus to the need for progress on racial equality and economic opportunity – the Neighborhood Builders program is a relevant and timely initiative to support the communities we serve,” said Al Arguello, market president, Bank of America. “This program enables partners like NPHS and CASA to not only continue to serve our communities, but also to expand their focus during the pandemic, making greater strides in addressing fast evolving issues such as affordable housing and homelessness, wrap around services and support for at-risk youth in underserved communities.”
“Affordable housing and the need to help our neighbors without homes are the key issues of our time,” Riverside Mayor Rusty Bailey said. “These challenges are exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, so these awards have never been more timely.”
“While we continue on a safe and steady pathway to recovery from the pandemic, there are still vulnerable communities facing exceptional challenges,” said John Valdivia, Mayor of San Bernardino. “Organizations like Court Appointed Special Advocates (C.A.S.A.) helps San Bernardino’s foster youth attain basic resources they need to succeed in life, and the grant from Bank of America’s Neighborhood Builder’s program will help them overcome additional pandemic-related challenges so that these children and young adults can continue on their path.”
In Riverside county alone, one in five who are unsheltered became homeless this year in part due to the pandemic, creating new demand for Neighborhood Partnership Housing Services for permanent supportive housing and resources to help prevent those vulnerable from becoming homeless. The Neighborhood Builders grant will be used to hire two onsite case workers, a food pantry and a computer lab at NPHS’s new 23-unit affordable housing development for chronically homeless, Sunrise at Bogart.
“We are very grateful for Bank of America’s investment,” stated Clemente Mojica, CEO, NPHS. “The funding will support Sunrise at Bogart, a 23-unit permanent supportive housing development in partnership with the City of Riverside. This development will help homeless individuals attain quality, stable housing and critical support services so they can lead more stable lives.”
C.A.S.A. of San Bernardino County trains and supervises local community volunteers to serve as Court Appointed Special Advocates for children and youth in foster care, providing one-to-one mentoring, and educational, healthcare, and welfare advocacy. Foster youth who have a C.A.S.A. advocate achieve 90% high school graduation rate, compared to the national average of only 54%. C.A.S.A. also provides services for foster care alumni ages 18-24 for their successful transition into adulthood. The Neighborhood Builders grant will help fund the hiring of additional staff and create a new Development Department and Communications and Marketing Department that will help the organization build its capacity to serve more children and youth and to pivot to a safe virtual service delivery model necessary during the pandemic.
“We are excited and proud to be recognized by Bank of America as a Neighborhood Builder,” said Cesar Navarrete, CEO, C.A.S.A. “This is a great opportunity for us to scale our program impact so that every child and youth in San Bernardino County’s foster care system has a CHAMPION on their side fighting for them every step of the way.”
Since 2004, Bank of America has invested over $260 million in 50 communities through Neighborhood Builders, partnering with more than 1,300 nonprofits and helping more than 2,600 nonprofit leaders strengthen their leadership skills. In the Inland Empire specifically, Bank of America has partnered with 25 nonprofits since 2004, investing $5 million to provide economic mobility, affordable housing, workforce development, basic needs and wraparound services. The invitation-only program is highly competitive, and leading members of the community participated in a collaborative selection process to identify this year’s awardees.
Inland Empire Regional Chamber of Commerce Welcomes Hawaii Chamber as Honorary Global Member
Empowering Future Generations: IERCC and Chamber of Commerce Hawaii Forge Partnership for Youth Development
In a landmark meeting that signifies the growing collaboration between regional chambers of commerce, the Inland Empire Regional Chamber of Commerce (IERCC) proudly welcomed the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii as an Honorary Global Member. This momentous occasion was marked by a ceremonial presentation led by Eddy Sumar, MBA, CCE, CICE, a distinguished member and Chair of the Education and Youth Skills Development Liaison at IERCC.
Eddy Sumar, renowned for his passionate advocacy for youth education and skill development, met with Sherry Menor-McNamara, CCE, President & CEO, and Tyler Hunt, Associate Vice President of Membership Services, of the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii. The meeting was not just a formal presentation but also an opportunity to share the innovative approaches IERCC is employing to champion youth development.
In a unique and inspiring gesture, the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii representatives were introduced to IERCC’s youth initiatives through a trilogy of educational books authored by Eddy Sumar himself. These books – “A Treasure Hunt With OTIS,” “The Hidden Dreams,” and “The Cutting Edge” – are a testament to Sumar’s dedication to empowering the youth. Each book addresses critical areas of youth development:
- “A Treasure Hunt With OTIS” provides wisdom to guide young lives.
- “The Hidden Dreams” unlocks the potential of identifying and pursuing youthful aspirations.
- “The Cutting Edge” offers vital insights into understanding credit and financial literacy.
Edward Ornelas, Jr., President & CEO of the Inland Empire Regional Chamber of Commerce, expressed his enthusiasm for this new partnership, stating, “This collaboration with the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii represents a significant step in our ongoing commitment to foster the leaders of tomorrow. By combining our resources and expertise, we can more effectively prepare our youth for the dynamic world they will inherit. Our shared vision for youth development and education is the cornerstone of this partnership.”
The Chamber of Commerce Hawaii expressed its enthusiasm for the collaboration, recognizing the value of the resources provided by IERCC. This partnership is a significant step towards a shared goal of fostering a brighter future for youth through education, skill development, and empowerment.
The Inland Empire Regional Chamber of Commerce is enthusiastically developing plans to launch a summer internship program exclusively for students from the Inland Empire, offering them the opportunity to travel to Hawaii for this enriching experience. This initiative, which stems from the IERCC’s recent collaboration with the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii, is focused on providing Inland Empire students with a unique opportunity to immerse themselves in the diverse business and cultural environment of Hawaii. The program aims to equip these students with invaluable hands-on experience in various industries, enhancing their skills and broadening their perspectives. This visionary approach underscores the IERCC’s dedication to fostering the professional and personal growth of its youth, preparing them for successful careers in an increasingly interconnected world.
The IERCC is committed to continuing these collaborative efforts and looks forward to a fruitful and impactful partnership with the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii, collectively striving to nurture the leaders of tomorrow.
A Great Milestone Reached! The Otis Dream Project Has Been Recognized in Zambia, Africa!
A Great Milestone Reached! The Otis Dream Project Has Been Recognized in Zambia, Africa!
Have you been wondering what happened to the establishment of the NGO (Non-Governmental Organization), the Otis Dream Project in Zambia, Africa? Well, wonder no more! As of August 10, 2023, the Otis Dream Project has become a reality! Yes, the government of Zambia has recognized the Otis Dream Project as a legal entity. Thanks to our incredible team on the ground and all the hard work they put into the project, the Otis Dream Project has become a legal NGO in a much shorter time frame than most NGOs in that country. This is a BIG milestone, the first of many more! Again, thanks to our hardworking team: Derby Chipwande, Chali Ezra Mwansa, and Edwin Mukwamba.
San Manuel Orange County Golf Tournament Raises $425,000 for Five Tribal, Local & National Nonprofits
24th Annual Tournament Recognizes O.C. based Meals on Wheels and Radiant Futures Among Others
The San Manuel Band of Mission Indians, Tribal leaders, business and community partners united for this year’s annual golf tournament to raise $425,000 for tribal, local and national nonprofits, making it the largest year for funds raised at the annual event. The San Manuel Band of Mission Indians has donated more than $3 million to 50 nonprofit organizations as a result of its annual golf tournament. The tournament was the first Tribal event at Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach Resort & Club since the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians acquired an interest in the property earlier this year.
The annual event commenced on July 16 with a celebration and a check presentation of $85,0000 each to five inspiring tribal, local and national nonprofits. The following nonprofits were awarded: Lakota Waldorf School on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in southwestern South Dakota dedicated to providing an exemplary education to reservation students while incorporating their culture; Voices for Children which serves children in Riverside and San Diego County who are in foster care by providing court appointed special advocates; Citrus Counseling Services located in Redlands which provides mental health services at low or no cost; Radiant Futures of Orange County provides crisis support, services for survivors, and education to prevent domestic violence and human trafficking; and Meals on Wheels OC which provides programming to nourish the wellness of senior citizens in Orange County.
San Manuel Band of Mission Indians Chairwoman, Lynn Valbuena, says she is moved by the community’s commitment to providing a hand up to nonprofits that are dedicated to making a difference regionally and throughout Indian Country.
“Each year I stand in awe of the thoughtfulness and generosity of our sponsors and partners to continue San Manuel’s mission of supporting organizations that are truly the boots on the ground for making our world a better place,” said San Manuel Chairwoman, Lynn Valbuena. “These five nonprofits are improving the lives of so many Native Americans, as well as local communities, and we are proud to help. The tournament is one of the many ways San Manuel demonstrates its value of giving back.”
This year, golfers teed off on ocean-view golf courses at Pelican Hill Golf Club in Newport Beach and Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach Golf Links in Dana Point from Monday, July 17 to Thursday, July 20.
Presenting sponsors of the tournament included Imagine This and PENTA Building Group. Yaamava’ Resort & Casino was also joined by its sports partners from the LA Dodgers, LAFC and the Anaheim Ducks.
Supporting nonprofit organizations is part of the Tribe’s commitment to their Giving Pillar also known as “San Manuel Cares.” For more information on San Manuel Care’s Program, please visit: www.sanmanuelcares.org
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