Atlanta Wealth Building Initiative (AWBI) advances community wealth building strategies through thought leadership, movement building, and new systems and structures of capital to challenge systemic bias and close the racial wealth gap. AWBI is dedicated to addressing the region's systemic racial wealth and economic inequity by removing barriers to shared economic prosperity for all while building an inclusive economy that promotes thriving communities. As an intermediary, our work is centered on the support and coordination of the nonprofit business support ecosystem with the intention to build leaders, promote wide-spread engagement, and advance bold ideas that move the sector forward for greater collective impact.
Community wealth building is a systems approach to economic development built on locally rooted and broadly held ownership. It is built on a framework of multiple drivers that work together to create a system that delivers an inclusive, sustainable community economy where all can prosper—particularly those who are normally excluded. With an initial focus on entrepreneurship as a pathway to building wealth, AWBI advances economic mobility opportunities for African Americans in Southeast, Southwest and Northwest Atlanta, with a particular focus on the Atlanta Beltline overlay (the area located approx. .5 mile from the Beltline).
In addition to its focus on the support of Black enterprise development, AWBI advances additional community wealth building strategies including access to capital and equitable finance, anchor institution collaborative strategies and market access, workforce, and equitable land use/real estate. Through a mix of collaborative funding approaches, AWBI deploys resources that test exciting wealth building models, leverage and pool public and private resources, and contribute to restorative policies and practices. AWBI is committed to providing grants and loans to nonprofits and small businesses located in and/or serving a low-income census tract to pilot ground-breaking community wealth building strategies and technical assistance. We achieve these objectives through the following strategic priorities:
LEAD: Advance New Ideas Through Thought Leadership
BUILD: Activate People Through Movement Building
INVEST: Deploy Capital Through Strategic Investments