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LISC Indianapolis selects four community organizations to join Microenterprise Navigator Program

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Thanks to funding from the City of Indianapolis Department of Metropolitan Development, LISC Indianapolis is expanding the reach of its Microenterprise Navigator Program by including four community-serving sites:

Martindale Brightwood Community Development Corporation, Indy Black Chamber of Commerce, Southeast Neighborhood Development (SEND) and Crooked Creek Community Development Corporation.

The Microenterprise Navigator Program, established in 2021, is designed to offer technical support and training to business owners who fall within or below 80% of the Area Median Income and provide services to low-to-moderate income neighborhoods.

This initiative aims to empower microenterprises owned by individuals from economically disadvantaged and underserved communities, enabling them to compete effectively in the market.

Additionally, it provides resource navigation services for other microenterprises in the community that may not meet the criteria for technical assistance under this program.

During its initial phase, the program partnered with La Plaza and the Kheprw Institute, collectively assisting over 160 microenterprise owners from minority and low-income backgrounds over a two-year period.

Notably, 64 of these businesses registered with the State of Indiana through the program, allowing them to establish separate business bank accounts, build their credit histories and access capital opportunities.

In this second phase of funding, each of the four new partner organizations are expected to serve a minimum of 30 microenterprises over the next 10 months.

Dr. David Hampton, executive director of LISC Indianapolis, emphasized the organization’s commitment to addressing racial wealth, health and opportunity disparities in the city.

“The Microenterprise Navigator Program specifically targets and prioritizes communities and microenterprises that have historically faced barriers to resources and business services, allowing them to grow their businesses and compete in the market,” said Hampton.

As part of the City’s Annual Action Plan aimed at advancing affordable housing and community development, the Department of Metropolitan Development (DMD) provided $361,028 in support of the Microenterprise Navigator Program.

“Every year, our Annual Action Plan leverages federal funding to move Indianapolis neighborhoods forward,” said Mayor Joe Hogsett.

“The Microenterprise Navigator Program does just that. Through this partnership, we’re eliminating barriers for Indy business owners and creating access to capital and technical assistance in four communities across the city. Thank you to our partners at LISC Indianapolis for leading the charge.”

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