ATLANTE—Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms announced new funding and partnerships for two major initiatives for Atlanta families: the Children’s Savings Account Program and the Youth Entrepreneurship Program (YEP).
“The Children’s Savings Account and Youth Entrepreneurship programs are two of our administration’s most proud accomplishments,” Bottoms said. “When I took office, I had a vision for a more affordable, equitable and resilient Atlanta – and that vision started with our children. These programs are another major investment in the future of our youth and the future of our city. Thank you to APS, Operation HOPE, United Way of Greater Atlanta, MoCaFi, Mastercard and so many others for being our village and helping to ensure that our children have an equal opportunity to realize their dreams. .
The city partnered with Atlanta Public Schools (APS) and Operation HOPE to establish the Children’s Savings Account Program. The program offers qualifications APS kindergarten students a new savings account, plus an initial deposit of $50. Operation HOPE will provide seed capital for savings accounts and provide low-income kindergarten children and their families with additional financial resources. The City of Atlanta is providing $2 million for the program, which is made possible by historic community incentives Bottoms brokered during the closing of the Gulch redevelopment, now known as Centennial Yards.
“For nearly 30 years, Operation HOPE has worked to ensure that economic opportunity is accessible to all, especially to communities that have historically been left out and left behind. We are honored to help lead the Children’s Savings Account Program on behalf of our hometown of Atlanta and thank Mayor Bottoms and the City Council for their leadership in this historic investment in our youth,” said John Hope Bryant, Founder, President and CEO. of Operation HOPE.
City partnered with United Way of Greater Atlanta for YEP expansion. YesEP was initially launched to provide employment opportunities and support services to young people selling water and concessions to motorists. The administration has recognized the need for a safe and productive way to engage these young people.
Bottoms announced a $2 million allocation using part of the U.S. bailout funds to fuel YEP. The program provides eligible youth with the professional and financial resources needed to focus on education and preparation for the job market. Youth participants will receive a monthly stipend of $200 while participating in mentoring, job readiness, leadership development and entrepreneurship certification programs.
“Atlanta is one of seven cities where Mastercard is working to close the racial wealth and opportunity gap, taking a focused approach alongside local governments, partners and community organizations. By working together, we can advance innovations like the One Atlanta Card to sustainably solve the most critical issues facing cities over the long term,” said Miguel Gamiño, EVP Enterprise Partnerships at Mastercard. “We are honored to continue our work with the City of Atlanta on this program to foster youth entrepreneurship with education and safety at its core.”
“The Equifax Foundation has been a proud partner of Mobility Capital Finance for several years. With our goal of fostering financial capability in Atlanta and other major cities, MoCaFi, its robust platform and fair mission, made perfect sense for us to invest,” said David Stiffler, president of the Equifax Foundation. “Our investment in MoCaFi was used to help MoCaFi hire Atlanta-based staff and align MoCaFi’s efforts with our other Atlanta-related investments, including Greater Atlanta Builds Credit and On the Rise Financial Center. We know the journey from financial exclusion to inclusion is often difficult and complicated, which is why the One Atlanta Immediate Response Incentive Mastercard, together with Equifax and other friends who support it, will mean a world of difference in the financial lives of many of the city’s biggest. vulnerable residents. »
“We are inspired and thrilled to see Mayor Bottoms accelerating the delivery of financial relief and digital equity across the city. This program and the mayor’s leadership provide a clear path to support our most vulnerable. It is also a great example of how the public and private sectors can come together for good,” said George Burciaga of IGNITE CITIES.
“We are thrilled to be part of this great initiative that supports programs like this that cultivate and encourage safe and positive entrepreneurial initiatives in black and brown communities,” said Wole Coaxum, CEO and Founder of MoCaFi. “I’m happy to see Mayor Bottoms and the One Atlanta team, led by Qaadirah Abdur-Rahim, supporting such a groundbreaking initiative.”
Bottoms’ commitment to expanding access to opportunities for young people follows the Hire Atlanta Youth Program, which she created. The program has placed more than 300 young people in paid internships this year, while providing access to more than 1,000 external jobs.