More than half of New Markets Tax Credit projects expand access to healthcare, social services, childcare, job training, nonprofits, and social service providers working to lift people out of poverty. Federal resources for community development have been cut by more than 80 percent since 1980, and communities increasingly count on the NMTC to support new and improved services for their most vulnerable populations.
Some recent examples:
Ferguson Empowerment Center
Michael McMillan, president and CEO of the Urban League’s St. Louis chapter, said the location was critical. “It was extremely important–just as important symbolically as it was programmatically,” he said. “It was the first building burned and was on the national news.”
A burned-out convenience store that was the epicenter of 2014 racial protests and riots in Ferguson, Mo., became a community-focused “empowerment center,” thanks to the work of community leaders and financial support from the new markets tax credit .
A New Community Center
The Community Center at Ferguson offers a variety of basic social services such as emergency financial, utility, and rent/mortgage assistance. Case managers provide casework and referral services, including financial planning assistance, job placement strategies, and emotional support in cases of abuse or crisis. Families are referred to as the Pathway of Hope program when the crises or barrier requires more long-term support.
Spark Academy is a free 8-week program that gives third and fourth-grade students an opportunity to discover their gifts and talents in a safe place after school Monday through Thursday. Spark encourages each participant to discover their gift and can build a solid foundation to grow.
The Believe Project
The Believe Project, a partnership with the St. Louis Black Authors of Children’s Literature, is a new literacy library created to be a safe space for children to enjoy the beauty of reading and will be featured at The Salvation Army Ferguson Community Empowerment Center through the Spark Academy and Ignite programs. The project’s vision is to ensure that “all children become confident and competent readers by the end of third grade” – focusing especially on books written by black authors and/or for black children’s audiences.
Federally Qualified Health Centers
NMTC-financing made nearly 400 FQHCs possible, expanding healthcare access for millions of low-income people.
Food Banks and Emergency Services Providers
The NMTC has financed nearly 200 homeless shelters and community food pantries.