The Community Foundation has made a multi-year commitment to strengthen neighborhoods through a grant to LISC (Local Initiatives Support Corporation) in Jacksonville. LISC Jacksonville invests in both the physical and human infrastructures needed to build and sustain strong communities. LISC Jacksonville has worked with community organizations to bring positive changes to nine Jacksonville neighborhoods.
LISC Jacksonville was founded in the spirit and principle of public-private partnership. And since it arrived in 1999, its focus has been on leveraging public dollars with private dollars to revitalize Jacksonville’s underserved neighborhoods. The Community Foundation, The Jessie Ball DuPont Fund and The Jaguars Foundation were the three organizations that were instrumental in bringing LISC to Jacksonville.
Since its founding, LISC Jacksonville has made $21 million in acquisition and construction loans in greater Jacksonville and is responsible for renovation or construction and sale of 236 homes in underserved communities.
In 2012, LISC identified two Jacksonville communities in which to pilot a more intensive community development strategy — EPIC Communities. This strategy sees community development more holistically, recognizing the way that investments in housing help families increase income and wealth, and the ways in which improvements in education and healthy environments contribute to economic development and long-term sustainability.
The Community Foundation’s contributions to LISC have helped leverage contributions from other local funders, creating an initial commitment of $900,000 in challenge funds to attract an additional $2 million investment from the community.
“The Community Foundation's investment in LISC sends a strong signal to other donors in our community about the importance of the work and the value of investing in LISC,” said Janet Owens, executive director of LISC Jacksonville.
“We are particularly grateful to those donors who gave The Community Foundation the flexibility to respond to community needs as they change over time. As a result, we seek to help more neighborhoods become economically viable and transformed into places where families and children thrive.”
- Janet Owens, executive director of LISC Jacksonville -