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We believe that wholistic economic opportunity is our greatest asset for building intergenerational financial stability. Holding a fulfilling job with adequate wages and benefits is a critical step to securing stable housing, educational attainment and overall health and wellness. Everyone must have fair and equitable access to the opportunities to build and capitalize on their knowledge, talent, and innate and learned skills. This access should lead to participation in the economy through diverse job options with career advancement opportunity, and business creation and ownership regardless of place, race, gender, physical or mental ability, or ethnicity.

COVID-19 hit WNC’s tourism economy especially hard and shined a stark light on what our region already knew – that we must diversify. Using the philanthropic tools of impact investing and program-related investments, Dogwood Health Trust helps our region’s economic developers attract and grow local businesses to create a more dynamic economy with jobs that support families in their pursuit of healthy and fulfilling lives. 

PARTNER PROFILE

Mountain BizWorks

Mountain BizWorks seeks to build a vibrant and inclusive entrepreneurial culture throughout the 18 counties in Western North Carolina. They work hard to help small businesses start, grow and thrive with the motto of “when small businesses succeed, we all prosper.”

Partner Highlights

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Economic Opportunity | Goal 2

Promote Work Readiness

Help build a skilled workforce with the knowledge and technical abilities to excel in a wide range of industry employment opportunities that provide a competitive, sustainable wage

Objective 2.1: Close the educational attainment gap in WNC, staying on pace with regional and county-specific projections (myFutureNC 2030).

Economic Opportunity | Goal 3

Build Economic Ecosystems

Help build a regional economic ecosystem that supports increased creation/retention of jobs and business ownership

Objective 3.1: Improve access to higher-paying jobs throughout the region, targeting the lowest income populations

Objective 3.2: Increase and retain quality jobs

Objective 3.3: Stimulate economic growth, catalyzing businesses and revenue

Economic Opportunity | Goal 4

Foster Entrepreneurship

Support a well-funded, sustainable, competitive entrepreneur and small business ecosystem throughout the region

Objective 4.1: Increase the number of Person of Color (POC)-led small businesses throughout the region

Objective 4.2: Increase the number of rural small businesses throughout the region