How Your City Could Get a Piece of JPMorgan Chase’s $500M Giveaway

In total, the $1.5B program can help 30 cities — and Chase.

JPMorgan Chase announced its $500 million pledge to stimulate economic growth in as many as 30 cities over the next five years. JPMorgan Chase’s AdvancingCities initiative is a spin-off of similar multimillion-dollar investment projects the bank conducted in Detroit, Chicago and Washington, D.C. It plans to inject the firm’s lending and philanthropic capital into the nation’s cash-starved cities.

The program will involve philanthropic giving and long-term lending. Relying heavily on local partnerships between businesses and nonprofits, the initiative aims to support and address “major social and economic challenges such as employment barriers, financial insecurity, and neighborhood disinvestment,” according to a press release issued by the bank.

Based on the success of previous initiatives, JPMorgan Chase expects an additional $1 billion from outside capital, which would result in a total of $1.5 billion that will be funneled to positive growth and change.

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JPMorgan Chase AdvancingCities Criteria for Application

See if your city — and, in turn, perhaps your business — is eligible to reap the $3 million maximum-fund-per-grantee economic benefit from JPMorgan Chase. Here are the requirements for organizations to qualify as candidates for the AdvancingCities investment, according to the company:  

  • Must be a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization exempt from federal income taxation and classified as a public charity under code sections 509(a)(1) or 509(a)(2)
  • Demonstrate expertise in the community and oversight that corresponds with the intended geography and systems
  • Strong organizational leadership and management
  • Commitment to diversity and inclusion for the project, and within the organization, particularly at senior staff and board level
  • Strong preference for projects that overlap with JPMorgan’s geographic business footprint and resources
  • Activities must be geographically focused on a single city, town or region
  • Engagement of a multisector coalition of actors (government, nonprofit, business, community, foundation, etc.) to design and implement the initiative
  • Able to achieve all deliverables within a three-year time frame
  • Must be available for meetings on progress every three months

The initiative is currently accepting applications through Nov. 30, 2018, from nonprofit organizations focused on job training, neighborhood revitalization, small-business growth and consumer financial health. Winners will be announced late April 2019.

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Aside from raising JPMorgan Chase’s goodwill quotient and positioning it as a banner example of corporate social responsibility practices, the rollout of AdvancingCities follows the bank’s January 2018 announcement of its intention to boost its philanthropic giving by 40 percent to $1.75 billion over five years. That announcement came on the heels of tax law changes that benefited companies and a softer regulatory environment, reported the Wall Street Journal.

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Although there’s no mention of immediate monetary benefit, JPMorgan Chase chairman and chief executive Jamie Dimon noted, “Opportunity is not shared equally across neighborhoods, [and] businesses can and must step up to help change the status quo by creating a better future for all, no matter where they live. It is in our best interest and the right thing to do.”

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