By John Hope Bryant, Founder, Chairman, and CEO, Operation HOPE, Inc.
On Nov. 1, valued strategic partner to Operation HOPE, SunTrust Banks, announced a historic commitment to expand HOPE Inside SunTrust from seven existing branch locations to 200 by 2020.
The expansion will increase the program’s annual impact to 150,000 individuals across the bank’s branch footprint!
SunTrust—the nation’s 10th largest bank, headquartered in Atlanta, has been an innovator in supporting HOPE Inside, a unique financial empowerment model that brings Operation HOPE financial dignity programming to underserved communities, free to the client.
Through HOPE Inside, SunTrust is helping people in underserved communities, including many right here in Atlanta, learn the language of money; working with Operation HOPE financial wellbeing coaches to transform established financial mindsets, and to develop customized action plans around building their own businesses, raising their credit scores, buying homes, or simply making better decisions with the money they have.
This significant action around the work of HOPE demonstrates many things about SunTrust, and its leadership. Beyond bringing Operation HOPE closer to its Project 5117 goal of opening 1,000 HOPE Inside locations by 2020, it highlights SunTrust’s commitment to do well by doing good in the communities the bank serves. To uplift communities torn down and incapacitated by lack of equity and opportunity; stifled by predatory lending and low credit scores. To support the working poor, the working class, and the struggling middle class, around the nation.
HOPE Inside SunTrust, alongside onUp—a movement launched by SunTrust earlier this year to steer Americans away from financial stress and towards financial confidence—will help empower whole communities of Americans, and by extension people around the world, that never got “the memo”—on free enterprise and capitalism; job creation, money, and self-determination.
The collective effort of all the individuals and corporate partners that support the mission of HOPE—that have sponsored HOPE Inside, whether in a bank branch, hospital, grocery store, police department headquarters, or on a college campus—extend the legacy of President Abraham Lincoln and the Freedman’s Bank; Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and his dream of integrating the dollar.
You see, though never acknowledged, civil rights and “silver rights” have always been connected. Today we stand in a critical moment in a new chapter in American history that has uncovered this truth.
Like all movements preceding it, and those happening in parallel, the movement around “Silver Rights”—rights to financial literacy, access to capital, and equity of opportunity, for all, spearheaded by Operation HOPE, represents a long, hard march. “Silver Rights” will be won in America’s suites, not the streets. Each milestone on the way to deploying sustainable community uplift across the country; helping all people to own and create the dream at the core of this nation’s ideal, must be highlighted to inspire new determination to stay the course.
WATCH: Operation HOPE Founder, Chairman, and CEO John Hope Bryant, and Brad Dinsmore, head of Consumer Banking at SunTrust Bank discuss financial empowerment through HOPE Inside.
About Financial Inclusion
Operation HOPE, Inc., powers the broadest financial inclusion network in the country. Through strategic partnerships with organizations like SunTrust Banks, Wells Fargo, and Coca-Cola, the nonprofit is making free enterprise accessible to all by equipping youth and adults with the financial training and tools to realize their aspirations and ensure their financial wellbeing. Through its core programs, Operation HOPE has provided financial dignity and economic empowerment to over 2.6 million individuals worldwide, and $2 billion in economic activity for the disenfranchised—turning check cashing customers into banking customers, renters into homeowners, small business dreamers into small business owners, and minimum wage workers into living wage consumers. Project 5117 is the organization’s multi-year four-pronged approach to combating economic inequality that aims to improve financial literacy, increase business role models and business internships for youth, and stabilize the American dream by boosting credit scores. The Atlanta Uplift 2020 initiative will escalate the organization’s services throughout the city to strengthen low- and middle-income families. For more information: www.OperationHOPE.org
Volunteer with HOPE Corps: http://www.operationhope.org/hopecorps
Learn more about membership levels: https://www.operationhope.org/becomeapartner