The CapitalMark Bank & Trust Nonprofit Resource Library will be located in the offices of United Way (85 Ocoee St. S.E.), and will provide an online database and library-type service to all local nonprofits so they may look for grants and other resources to help them better provide their services.
Both online resources and a printed library of materials will be available at the center.
“We have been working with the Foundation Center at United Way of Greater Chattanooga and have attended trainings there as well as accessed their database,” said Patrick Long, United Way vice president of Community Impact.
“Several others in our community have also been working with their center.
“We felt the demand locally for this information had grown to the point that United Way of Bradley County needed to offer those services locally, rather than going to Chattanooga for this valuable information,” he said.
Thus, the decision to create a resource library in this area was made. United Way, which uniquely collaborates with many nonprofit organizations already, seemed the appropriate organization to house and maintain the center.
However, funding was necessary to make the Resource Center a reality. In stepped CapitalMark Bank & Trust.
“United Way is the backbone of our community, supporting area nonprofits and the numerous people they serve. It made sense for CapitalMark to partner with United Way in this effort as we open our new office just down the block from the new Resource Center,” said Keith Barrett, CapitalMark Bank & Trust’s Cleveland president.
He continued, “We see this investment having broad impact, serving the entire community and providing the leverage for United Way and partner agencies to garner greater investments from out-of town foundations and funding sources. Speaking as a banker, we like to see contributions leveraged to grow and strengthen a community.”
The center will consist of computer terminals connected to the Internet and subscriber-based access to all inclusive foundation center resource databases. Wi-Fi service is also available at the United Way offices for any non-profits utilizing their own laptops.
The United Way also subscribes to several nonprofit publications which would be available to those using the Resource Library. Annual reports from the majority of the foundations that give in the local geographic area are also available.
“We will offer trainings, at least quarterly, on how to use the database and library materials as often as our users require or desire them” noted Long. “The United Way partners monthly with the Community Action Network to provide trainings to local nonprofit organizations.”
Emily McComb, project director for the Community Action Network, said the Resource Library would add to the organization’s ability to help local nonprofits complete their missions.
“While we have worked to offer trainings to local nonprofit leadership over issues pertaining to board giving, the development and execution of fundraising plans, and the like, we lack the ability to properly resource them with information regarding potential grant makers and financial partners,” she said. “This resource library will help in the continued growth and professionalization of our local nonprofit sector.”
Reba Terry, who chairs the Bradley County Interagency Council while also heading up the local nonprofit organization The Caring Place, agreed.
“As a network of service professionals, I know that one of our sector’s greatest challenges is procuring the financial resources we need to complete our missions,” she said.
“The resource library’s database and the ancillary materials will be of great benefit to the organizations I speak for, and would be met with excitement and enthusiasm from Cleveland’s nonprofit community.”
Barrett added, “This new resource, in the hands of a ‘Take Action’ community like Cleveland has unknown potential. The vision, prospects and work ethic of this community was a perfect match for CapitalMark, as we considered expansion opportunities late last year. This expansion mindset is the basis for the Resource Center, helping non-profits work smarter, access more capital and serve more people to make our community an even better place to live and raise families.”
Matt Ryerson, president and CEO of United Way of Bradley County, said he is pleased to work with CapitalMark Bank & Trust on this project, and knows that it will be a service that will be very useful to the community as a whole.
“We appreciate Keith and all of those at CapitalMark for their dedication to helping the community,” he said.
“Keith has been involved with us in many ways, such as serving on our board and executive committee for years, and was very instrumental in United Way being selected to manage the Bradley Memorial Health Endowment Fund.
“He has been involved in our collaborative efforts with other organizations, and this is just another example of his, and the entire CapitalMark staff, dedication to helping others in Cleveland and Bradley County,” Ryerson added.
The CapitalMark investment will make a huge difference in the community, Ryerson said.
“The return on this initial $5,000 investment could be a hundredfold and the ultimate impact will be hard to measure, but we know it will be extraordinary,” he stated.
CapitalMark Bank and Trust offers a wide range of banking and trust services to businesses and individuals. Founded March 5, 2007, CapitalMark has locations in Chattanooga, Cleveland and Knoxville, and received regulatory approval to open an office in Oak Ridge.
Additional information about CapitalMark and its full line of products and services can be found at www.capitalmark.com.