The South’s economic history is dominated by extractive industry, artificially cheap labor, unbridled economic development, and exploitation of the region’s human and natural resources.
Community-led economic development organizations are breaking down barriers to access to wealth-building tools for historically excluded Southern communities. They are changing the narrative about the region’s economic past and future. They are capitalizing on the South’s rich assets: its people, its land and its culture.
- DO understand the long-shared past of Southern communities and their long-term vision for their shared future.
- DO bring the full range of your financial resources to bear on investments in Southern community economic development.
- DO invest in the diversity of community assets present in any Southern community.
- DON’T invest in community economic development that does not include meaningful community representation.
- DON’T underestimate the structural change potential in community economic development.
- DON’T write off Southern grantee partners because of capacity needs.
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