Washington, D.C.-October 18th, 2016- The Latino Economic Development Center (LEDC) will be profiled in the upcoming season of Visionaries, the award-winning public television series, hosted by acclaimed actor Sam Waterston of HBO's The Newsroom and formerly of Law & Order. Visionaries will begin airing on PBS stations across the country in the fall of 2016.
Visionaries returns with six-half hour episodes that take the viewer around the world to experience the lives of extraordinary people tackling some of the humanity's toughest challenges. These are timely stories that address issues from today's newspaper headlines: immigration, mental health, income disparity, global sustainability and social innovation. Sam Waterston guides us on social change initiatives that lead to real solutions with proven outcomes, many of which have the potential to change the world.
Selected from hundreds of nonprofits nationwide LEDC is a leading organization driving economic and social advancement of low to moderate income Latinos and other underserved communities in the D.C. and Baltimore Metropolitan Areas.The program featuring LEDC highlights examples of economic survival and sustainability in the communities LEDC serves as well as for the organization itself. "We at LEDC were so excited to partner with the Visionaries team on producing this important depiction of our work. Sustainability is a challenge for our neighborhoods and for our organization and this piece demonstrates that in a poignant way across all of our programs and markets," said LEDC Executive Director, Marla Bilonick.
LEDC will be screening the Visionaries program that features their organization on Wednesday, November 9th at the WeWork Wonderbread Factory/LEDC Offices at 641 S Street NW Washington, DC 20001.The screening is part of LEDC's 3-part celebration of their 25th Anniversary and will include a panel made up of individuals who helped shape the organization.
"I can't remember a season when Visionaries had the opportunity to meet so many incredible people. I think public television viewers are going to be inspired and moved to action," said Bill Mosher, Founder and Director of Visionaries.
Visionaries is a documentary series, hosted by acclaimed actor Sam Waterston, that highlights the rarely told stories of individuals and nonprofit organizations that are working to create positive social change throughout the world. Visionaries is the winner of several Telly Awards and received an Emmy nomination for Best Documentary. Visionaries has produced over 200 documentaries for its nationally broadcast public television series, which is currently airing its 21th season is presented by WGBY in Springfield, MA. For more information, please visit www.visionaries.org.
Washington, D.C. - According to an Aspen Institute report (2015) regarding the racial wealth gap, the lack of wealth in Latino and African-American communities is related to the lack of businesses and financial assets. On September 27th, 2016, the U.S. Department of the Treasury announced its awardees for its Community Development Financial Institution Fund (CDFI Fund) program. The Latino Economic Development Center (LEDC) was one of three organizations in DC and one of two operating in Baltimore who received this award. LEDC will be receiving $500,000 from the Treasury Department to support its small business micro-lending efforts in the DMV region.
The same week, on September 30th, 2016, LEDC also learned that it had been awarded $400,000 from the Department of Health and Human Service's (HHS) Community Economic Development (CED) program to provide local DC businesses with financing in order to create jobs with living wages for low-income DC residents.
This is a historic time for LEDC as it is the first time it has secured two federal grants of this size in one year, and the first time it has been awarded Community Economic Development funding through HHS. "We are so excited and honored to have been selected as 2016 CDFI Fund and CED recipients. The new businesses and jobs that will result from LEDC's financing efforts will help low income residents advance economically, strengthen their financial self-sufficiency, and contribute to the revitalization of Washington, D.C and Baltimore City, MD neighborhoods," said LEDC Executive Director, Marla Bilonick.
About the CDFI Fund:
Since its creation in 1994, the CDFI Fund has awarded more than $2.2 billion to CDFIs, community development organizations, and financial institutions through the CDFI Program, the NACA Program, the Bank Enterprise Award Program, the Capital Magnet Fund, and the Financial Education and Counseling Pilot Program. To learn more about the CDFI Fund and its programs, please view the Fact Sheet or visit the CDFI Fund's website at www.cdfifund.gov.
About Community Economic Development:
The Community Economic Development (CED) program is a Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Community Services (OCS) initiative designed to address the economic needs of low-income individuals and families through the creation of sustainable business development and employment opportunities.
Learn more about CED.
Visionaries: Changing the World One Story at a Time, has chosen LEDC to be profiled on their 21st season! It looks to be very exciting, with the potential for raising the profile of the work we do in the areas of Small Business development and Housing. The program, including our episode, will be broadcast on more than 100 public television stations across the country - and in 15 of the top 20 U.S. markets. It will be a great opportunity for us to show the world the impact of our work.
This season, Visionaries is focusing on the concept of sustainability. Visionaries has chosen LEDC to be profiled because our story represents a unique opportunity to highlight the core concepts of sustainability---defined as the capacity to endure--- on two distinctly different levels. Specifically, they will dive into sustainability as it relates to our aim to drive and sustain economically just communities...as well as how LEDC has sustained itself as an organization over 25 years and through our own hurdles.
Visionaries is a Boston-based non-profit, with a great record of success profiling non-profits around the globe. See link here for more detail: http://www.visionaries.org
Talia Brock at the Committee on Housing & Community Development Performance Oversight: "As affordable housing advocates, we are pleased that affordable housing will be preserved at each of these properties and that tenants will not be displaced. As organizers that support tenant power and agency, we are extremely disappointed in the events leading up to these projected plans. The reality is that while affordable housing will be preserved at these buildings, it happened without the tenants input. These are two situations where affordable housing full of at-risk tenants could have been lost. Tenants should not be manipulated or their rights ignored because of disability."