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For Immediate Release                                                                 Contact: Scot Slay
June 14, 2011                                                                                  Office: (601) 944-4175
                                                                                                           E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


HOPE Awarded NeighborWorks® Membership

Mid South Region Will Receive National Affordable Housing Boost


Jackson, Miss. — Hope Enterprise Corporation (HOPE) has been awarded membership in the national NeighborWorks® network. This significant achievement, which involved HOPE meeting high organizational health and performance standards, enables the organization to gain access to a powerful battery of training, research, technical assistance and funding opportunities. Neighborworks will be providing $300,000 as an initial investment to support HOPE’s work.


“HOPE has worked tirelessly for more than 15 years to build quality affordable housing and to provide financing with reasonable terms to homebuyers across the Mid South,” said HOPE CEO Bill Bynum. “We are excited about joining the NeighborWorks network our ability to access the powerful resources and best practices in affordable housing will allow us to more efficiently serve residents in our region.”


HOPE is a financial institution, community development intermediary and policy center that provides affordable financial services; leverages private, public and philanthropic resources; and engages in policy analysis in order to fulfill its mission of strengthening communities, building assets, and improving lives in economically distressed parts of the Mid South.


Since 1994 HOPE’s efforts have generated over $1.4 billion in financing and benefited more than 75,000 individuals in the Delta, Katrina-affected areas and other distressed communities throughout Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee.


NeighborWorks® America Chief Executive Officer Eileen Fitzgerald congratulated HOPE for its high productivity, dedication to affordable housing and service within its community, and accountability.


“NeighborWorks network membership provides HOPE access to resources that strengthen its ability to serve the Mid South, create jobs, and contribute to local economic growth. We are proud to have productive and effective organization join our network of excellence,” said Fitzgerald.


Since 2000, HOPE has improved the quality of life for over 12,000 individuals by expanding access to homeownership through its affordable housing and homebuyer counseling programs. In 2010, over two-thirds of the families assisted through HOPE’s mortgage programs were minorities and 88% were first time homebuyers. HOPE also connected over 1,500 individuals to housing counseling – of whom 8 out of 10 were low-income. Among the 1,500 individuals counseled, 281 received services specifically to avert a foreclosure. Ninety-three percent of the families that received foreclosure prevention counseling report positive outcomes to the cases handled by HOPE.


NeighborWorks America created the NeighborWorks network to improve homeownership opportunities for low- and moderate-income families; provide financial education and improve financial literacy; rebuild and repair properties; develop affordable multifamily units; and use innovative strategies to improve safety and revitalize communities across the nation.


Collectively, over the last five years NeighborWorks America and the more than 235 members of the NeighborWorks network have been able to:

  • Invest more than $20 billion in America's urban, rural, and suburban communities;
  • Create the nation's largest force of certified homeownership education counselors and foreclosure intervention counselors;
  • Provide homeownership counseling to more than 500,000 families;
  • Assist more than 85,000 families of modest means to achieve their dream of homeownership;
  • Develop, own and manage over 80,000 affordable, high quality rental units;
  • Rehabilitate more than 85,000 homes using state-of-the-art methods, including green and healthy building techniques;
  • Create or sustain more than 23,000 jobs per year through local NeighborWorks-supported projects and activities.
  • Mobilize hundreds of thousands of volunteers to revitalize communities.



About NeighborWorks® America

NeighborWorks® America creates opportunities for people to improve their lives and strengthen their communities by providing access to homeownership and to safe and affordable rental housing. Much of our success is achieved through our support of the NeighborWorks network ― more than 235 community development organizations working in more than 4,400 urban, suburban and rural communities in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. In the last five years, NeighborWorks organizations have generated nearly $20 billion in reinvestment in these communities. NeighborWorks America is the nation’s leading trainer of community development and affordable housing professionals.