Up & Coming Weekly

June 13, 2023

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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Page 8 of 24

8 UCW JUNE 14 - 20, 2023 WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM e Center for Economic Empowerment & Development received a $75,000 grant from Truist Foundation to be used to assist in providing a level playing field for women and the under served busi- ness owners in our community who disproportion- ately face barriers. e grant will help CEED continue its work in providing comprehensive training and counseling in small business to help clients start, sustain and grow their own businesses, especially those who are socially and economically disadvantaged. CEED's mission has always been to promote the growth, productiveness and well-being of entre- preneurs through counseling, education, informa- tion and advocacy programs. ey are dedicated to helping entrepreneurs find their own strength to sucCEED. In 2022, CEED served 1,905 clients of which ap- proximately 87% were women, 83% were minority and 65% had a military affiliation. CEED was started by a group of women and then led by Sylvia Ray who wanted to ensure that women had an equitable chance to economically support themselves and their families. Its programs are de- signed to support that vision and mission. "We are so excited to have the Truist Foundation as an equity partner! With their investment, CEED will be kicking off entrepreneurial cohorts start- ing this fall, which will help us to continue to lay the foundation and increase small business owner competency through training," says Suzy Hrabovsky, Executive Director of CEED. "We are looking to ex- pand our financial literacy course offerings through- out the counties we serve, which will increase self-sustaining infrastructures through education. By increasing knowledge and technical assistance, we can increase the sustainability of businesses and their success using loan capital." "Education goes hand-in-hand with a business owners' vision of success and the drive to start and grow a business," said Chris Isley, Truist Regional President of Eastern North Carolina. "We are excited to be part of this program that helps under served business owners overcome systemic barriers and contribute to their communities in meaningful ways. is work is at the heart of Truist's purpose of inspiring and building better lives and communi- ties." e Center for Economic Empowerment & Devel- opment is a micro-lender with a Women's Business Center Program providing in-house 1:1 counseling, technical assistance, networking/mentorship op- portunities, and access to Capital. CEED develops community-led solutions to create an ecosystem where our business owners can be successful. CEED is an advocate for their success throughout the life cycle of their business from developing the idea, creating a sustainable plan, and providing the resources and capital for their success. e Truist Foundation is committed to Truist Financial Corporation's purpose to inspire and build better lives and communities. Established in 2020, the foundation makes strategic investments in non- profit organizations to help ensure the communities it serves have more opportunities for a better quality of life. Grants and activities focus on building career pathways to economic mobility and strengthening small businesses. CEED receives grant to help local small businesses by AUDREY HASSLOCHER NEWS AUDREY HASSLOCHER, Contributor, Freebird Communications. COMMENTS? Editor@upandcomingweekly.com 910-484-6200. Insurance products are underwritten by Colonial Life & Accident Insurance Company, Columbia, SC. Ⓒ2020 Colonial Life & Accident Insurance Company. All rights reserved. Colonial Life is a registered trademark and marketing brand of Colonial life & Accident Insurance Company. 8-20 | NS-369880 steven.grimes@coloniallifesales.com 910-916-7191 Injury | Illness | Dental | Vision | Life Steven Grimes coloniallife.com Your Local Colonial Life Family. We provide benets that your employees want for those unexpected moments in life, whether that's an accident, illness or injury. Colonial Life. Keep it Local. Keep Unexpecting.® e $75,000 grant from Truist Foundation will help CEED pro- vide under served community members resources to start, grow and sustain their businesses. (Photo courtesy CEED)

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