Pictured left to right (front row): John Hope Bryant, Founder, Chairman and CEO, Operation HOPE, Inc.; Brian Doran, NY Metro Region Executive, PCB; Mary Hagerty Ehrsam, CEO, New York and Division President, HOPE Youth Empowerment Group Operation HOPE, Inc.; PCB Assistant Branch Manager Charlene Wint; Manuel Chinea, COO of PCB; Stephanie Penceal, Small Business Program Manager, HOPE Inside. (Back row) left to right: Rafael Sanchez, PCB Regional Manager, Manhattan North, Bronx & Queens; Malik Hodges, PCB 125th Street Branch Manager
A celebration to commemorate the opening of the HOPE Inside took place yesterday on April 1, at Popular Community Bank’s Harlem branch in New York City – the same location where aspiring entrepreneurs are learning the basics of building their own business by attending these free workshops with a trained Operation HOPE counselor.
“Operation HOPE is proud to join Popular Community Bank to celebrate the launch of the first HOPE Inside for the state of New York, said John Hope Bryant, Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Operation HOPE, Inc. “The HOPE Inside model is an important part of Project 5117, our national initiative to continue Dr. King’s work to bring economic justice to underserved communities. It is my sincere hope that this first location in Harlem actually represents the first of many more to come, in addition to the three additional locations that are already planned.”
“We are thrilled to share the same commitment Operation HOPE has of helping others secure a brighter financial future,” said Brian Doran, New York Metro Region Executive, Popular Community Bank. “With small business employing over half of the country’s workforce, the support and growth of entrepreneurs and small business is critical in order to have a healthy community and robust local and national economy. We strive to provide the necessary tools, education, advocacy and guidance to the small business community.”
There are two options offered through HOPE Inside:
The Technical Assistance Program – in a private consultation with a trained Operation HOPE Counselor, candidates are helped with establishing their goals and needs, review of their credit report, business plan and financials, and are provided assistance through referral programs.
The Entrepreneurial Training Course – is a 12-week program supplying entrepreneurs with simple, practical information to help them succeed, as well as feature a variety of guest speakers. Topics covered include evaluating feasibility, selecting a business name, conducting market research, advertising, securing startup money, types of distribution channels and where to access capital.
Mansur Abdus-Salaam is also a participant in the 10th class of Operation HOPE NY’s Entrepreneurial Training Program. He is a native Harlemite who has years of cooking experience and training from his family. Inspired by his mother, he is starting Griffith’s Food Products, a company that will feature all-natural, organic food products, featuring his special hot sauce made from a secret process that he learned from her.
Chauntee Jackson is a participant in the 10th class of Operation HOPE NY’s Entrepreneurial Training Program. She and her partner, Taneesha Woodyear also an ETP participant, are starting Two Wives, Inc. Cleaning Service. Chauntee currently works as a direct care provider for the mentally challenged where cleaning is a part of her daily job. She and Taneesha are forming their cleaning company to help take the stress and strain from working parents, so that they can come home to comfortable clean home.
The partnership to develop HOPE Inside program commenced in November 2013 with a commitment of $300,000 from Popular Community Bank for four locations. Seeing value in the program, Popular Community Bank has already committed to launch three additional HOPE Inside locations this year, in the New York area.
Focused on small business development the first Workshop took place in mid-February and the next workshop started March 5 – focusing on business ideas ranging from real estate financing to components of a business plan, to help these entrepreneurs of tomorrow achieve success.
For more information or to sign up for the Small Business Development Program speak with the Operation HOPE representative at the 125th Street Popular Community Bank Branch or call (917) 477-2800.