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Truist invests $17 million in the future of Charlotte and communities across North Carolina

Commitments will support affordable housing, career development and economic mobility initiatives

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Aug. 10, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Truist Financial Corporation (NYSE: TFC) and Truist Foundation today announced $17 million in commitments to support affordable housing in Charlotte and career development and economic mobility programs across North Carolina.

The Truist commitment consists of three initiatives:

  • $15 million equity investment from Truist Community Capital in the Housing Impact Fund II to combat displacement, secure affordable housing and facilitate critical services for low-to-moderate income families across Mecklenburg County. It is the second such fund formed by Erskine Bowles, former head of the U.S. Small Business Administration and White House Chief of Staff under President Clinton, and Nelson Schwab, a founding partner of Carousel Capital.
  • $1 million Truist Foundation grant to Per Scholas North Carolina to expand technology skills training in rural North Carolina.
  • $1 million Truist Foundation grant to NPower to provide technology skills and employment opportunities for military-connected individuals and underserved young adults in the Raleigh community.

"Safe, affordable housing and career pathways are key to North Carolina's vibrancy and economic growth. Truist's purpose is to inspire and build better lives and communities, and our commitment today addresses these critical needs," said Truist Chairman and CEO Bill Rogers. "We are honored to be the anchor investor in the Housing Impact Fund II, which has a proven and innovative approach to preserving affordable housing near jobs, transit and quality education in Charlotte. Our grant to NPower makes its free information technology training available for the first time in the state to help many North Carolinians attain quality jobs. The grant to Per Scholas also supports upward mobility with the expansion of its remote information technology training program in rural areas of North Carolina. These organizations are truly making a difference to strengthen our communities."

Truist Community Capital continues to lead in affordable housing investment fund
Truist renews its role as the anchor investor in the Housing Impact Fund II (HIF II), which has raised $66.8 million with a goal to preserve 1,200 units of Naturally Occurring Affordable Housing (NOAH) in Mecklenburg County over the next two years. HIF II follows the success of HIF I, a $58 million fund formed in 2020 that has facilitated the acquisition and rehabilitation of 805 units in five Mecklenburg County communities. In total, HIF I and II will invest nearly $125 million in affordable housing and services in the community.

The housing created by HIF I is more than 97% occupied, serves more than 2,000 residents and has 20-year affordability covenants that ensure their continued availability to those earning less than 80% of the area median income. HIF II will focus its investments on apartment communities that are vulnerable to gentrification. Like HIF I, HIF II will spend more than 90% of its renovation dollars with minority-led businesses.

"Protecting NOAH properties is an important and lower-cost way for growing cities to provide affordable housing to residents," said Mark Ethridge, principal at Ascent Housing, which oversees property acquisition, rehabilitation and operation for HIF I and II. "Without protection, NOAH apartments will not stay affordable, and we risk losing these units to redevelopment and pricing thousands of people out of the housing market. Truist and our fund investors are helping ensure safe, affordable housing options are available in these communities."

HIF II received support from a diverse group of investors with deep ties to Charlotte, including Truist, PNC Bank, Atrium Health, Honeywell, the Leon Levine Foundation and numerous other companies, foundations and individuals. Ascent Housing, under Ethridge's direction, will serve as operating partner for HIF II. Managing members of HIF II will be Schwab and Bowles, co-founders of Charlotte-based private equity firm Carousel Capital. Additional information about HIF I and II is available.

Truist Foundation grants build skills, help propel economic mobility across state  
In an era where technology and digital prowess have become essential for many job opportunities, Truist Foundation announced two grants with a singular focus: forging pathways to economic mobility through technology-oriented training initiatives.

NPower, a nationwide tech training program spanning seven states, is venturing into North Carolina, marking its debut in Raleigh—a vibrant city within the Research Triangle community. This ambitious expansion seeks to attract, educate and empower at least 150 new learners over the course of the grant, and aims to hone their skills to master the art of information technology (IT) with the expectation of acquiring expertise equivalent to professionals with one to two years of experience. One of the goals of this initiative is for the impact to extend beyond the boundaries of learning, enabling these graduates to confidently embrace the digital economy and its myriad possibilities.

"Real innovation begins when the problem statement is clear and there is a sincere commitment to address it. That's why we're thrilled to be partnering with Truist Foundation for our expansion into North Carolina," said Bertina Ceccarelli, CEO of NPower. "Empowering underserved communities through innovation in tech and embracing diversity isn't just a vision; it's the driving force behind NPower's mission, where every challenge becomes an opportunity to pave the way for a brighter, more inclusive tomorrow."

Per Scholas, an organization that has been advancing equity and increasing opportunity across America for more than 25 years, aims to double the size of its technology skills training offering in the Tarheel state. Through dynamic partnerships, Per Scholas North Carolina will offer remote training programs to more than 250 learners in rural areas of the state in an effort to increase access and opportunity for high-growth careers in technology. With a robust roster of employer partners, from Fortune 500 companies to innovative startups, some previous graduates of the program were able to earn nearly twice their pretraining wages, which can result in sustainable economic mobility.

"Per Scholas is grateful for this tremendous investment into Per Scholas North Carolina from Charlotte-based Truist Foundation, helping to increase pathways to economic mobility for North Carolinians. We know the transformative impact a career in technology can have on individuals, and increasing access and opportunity is key. Per Scholas North Carolina has seen the impact of our rural training model already, injecting more than $1.9 million back into local communities. We're very humbled by Truist Foundation's grant, which will help us unlock potential for even more aspiring rural technologists, in turn building stronger communities, companies and economies," said Caitlyn Brazill, chief development officer of Per Scholas. 

About Housing Impact Fund II
Housing Impact Fund II is a $66.8 million social impact equity fund raised to preserve naturally occurring affordable housing in Mecklenburg County. HIF II acquires, renovates and sets long-term affordability covenants on large-scale apartment communities vulnerable to gentrification. The fund will set aside 30% of its portfolio for households earning less than 30% of area median income (AMI), 50% of units to households earning less than 60% AMI and 20% of units to households earning less than 80% AMI. HIF II follows the success of the initial Housing Impact Fund which preserved over 800 apartments in opportunity-rich areas of Charlotte housing more than 2,000 residents. HIF II is managed by Erskine Bowles and Nelson Schwab and operated in partnership with Ascent Housing. More information is available at www.ascenthousing.com and www.ascenthousing.com/housing-impact-fund.

About NPower
NPower is a national nonprofit on a mission to move people from poverty to the middle class by training youth from underserved communities and military-connected individuals in a range of tech skills and placing them in quality jobs. Students who enter their free, six-month program, earn industry-recognized certifications and graduate with the competencies of an IT professional with one to two years of experience. NPower also places students in paid internships with corporate and nonprofit organizations. Eighty percent of NPower graduates get a full-time job or continue their education. Not only is NPower changing life trajectories for individuals from vulnerable communities, but they are also strengthening the overall competitiveness of U.S. businesses hamstrung by today's limited pool of IT talent. To learn more about NPower, visit www.npower.org.

About Per Scholas
For more than 25 years, Per Scholas has been advancing equity and increasing opportunity across America. Per Scholas unlocks potential for individuals, communities, and employers through rigorous training for careers in tech. Partnering with dynamic employer partners, from Fortune 500 companies to innovative startups, we are building sustainable and diverse talent pipelines, together changing the face of tech. With national remote training and campuses in 20 cities and growing, Per Scholas offers tuition-free training in the most in-demand tech skills, including Cloud, Cybersecurity, Data Engineering, IT Support, Software Engineering, and more. To date, more than 20,000 individuals have gained the skills to launch high-growth tech careers, earning three times their pre-training wage. Diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging is our DNA, with 85 percent of learners are people of color, two in five are women, and more than half have a high school diploma as their highest education credential. Learn more by visiting PerScholas.org and follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. For local updates, follow Per Scholas North Carolina on LinkedIn and Facebook.

About Truist Foundation
Truist Foundation is committed to Truist Financial Corporation's (NYSE: TFC) purpose to inspire and build better lives and communities. Established in 2020, the foundation makes strategic investments in nonprofit organizations to help ensure the communities it serves have more opportunities for a better quality of life. Truist Foundation grants and activities focus on building career pathways to economic mobility and strengthening small businesses. Learn more at Truist.com/Foundation.

About Truist
Truist Financial Corporation is a purpose-driven financial services company committed to inspiring and building better lives and communities. Truist has leading market share in many high-growth markets in the country and offers a wide range of products and services through our retail and small business banking, commercial banking, corporate and investment banking, insurance, wealth management and specialized lending businesses. Headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, Truist is a top 10 U.S. commercial bank with total assets of $555 billion as of June 30, 2023. Truist Bank, Member FDIC. Learn more at Truist.com.

SOURCE Truist Financial Corporation

For further information: Media Contacts: Brian Boudreaux, Truist, media@truist.com; Mark Ethridge, Ascent Housing, 704-651-2742, mark@ascent.re; Kristen Fraser, Truist Foundation, media@truist.com; Yasmine Sabry, NPower, 201-888-5097, Yasmine.Sabry@npower.org; Sara Luciano, Per Scholas, 332-895-0051, sLuciano@perscholas.org