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Our Network

Arkansas

Arkansas AFN is a regional chapter of grantmakers who invest in opportunities for low and middle income individuals and families to build economic well-being. Members include private, public, corporate, and community foundations, public-sector funders, and financial institutions who want to help Arkansans secure economic stability, for now and for years to come. Arkansas AFN connects funders and their peers in the nonprofit, public, and private sectors. Together they share promising programs and smart strategies, gather knowledge to make their grantmaking more effective, and work to increase investments in asset building.

Arkansas AFN was launched in 2016 as a regional affiliate of national AFN by a core group of funders including the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation, Entergy Charitable Foundation, the Carl B. and Florence E. King Foundation, Southern Bancorp Community Partners, and the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis-Little Rock Branch. Membership is open to funders who invest in a range of initiatives that build assets for Arkansas, from early childhood education, college access, or workforce development to health, financial capacity, or micro-enterprise. Arkansas AFN members meet regularly and host events to share ideas. Grantmakers investing in Arkansas should contact Abby Hughes Holsclaw if interested in joining this chapter.

How We Work

  • Inform: Arkansas AFN members learn from one another and stakeholders as they seek solutions to local challenges. The chapter hosts issue-based programming and calls-to-action that reflect research and philanthropic thought leadership that highlights actionable roles for philanthropy. While focusing on a variety of topics, the chapter gathers local leaders and national experts together to share data and ideas, promote innovative approaches, and help establish common language to build collaboration.
  • Influence: Arkansas AFN engages funders and public/private stakeholders in frank, issue-based discussions that influence policy and foster systemic change. Members seek opportunities to accelerate economic prosperity while also reducing racial, ethnic, and gender wealth gaps. Members provide an insightful Southern voice to inform national and local conversations on topics including access to capital for women of color, reduction of debt, financial coaching, Arkansas tax reform, and banking the unbanked.
  • Connect: Arkansas AFN members support peer-to-peer learning and cross-sector collaboration. Members identify and leverage replicable and scalable high-impact strategies and innovative approaches to connect and inform influential funders of actionable investments.
  • Build: Arkansas AFN works to increase the number of grantmakers and resources focused on strategies that help low and moderate income people build and protect assets. Members leverage one another’s interests and networks to actively identify additional funders willing to co-invest in the South. 

Regional Focus Areas

  • Narrative change & leveraging grass top voices

  • Financial access

  • Women entrepreneurs

Arkansas AFN in the News

CLICK HERE for a collection of news on AR AFN and our partners

Upcoming Events

October 7, 2021: Bank On Arkansas+ 3rd Annual Summit — Supporting Financial Recovery in the Midst of a Pandemic: How do we support programs that provide financial relief for Arkansans and build efforts for long term policy changes in our state? LEARN MORE AND REGISTER

CLICK HERE for information and resources from our past events.

Chapter Highlights

Upcoming Events

Contact

Are you a Arkansas grantmaker interested in joining this chapter? Contact us to learn more.

 

Abby Hughes Holsclaw, abby@assetfunders.org

Steering Committee

Elizabeth Brister

Entergy Charitable Foundation

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Kim Davis

Walton Family Foundation

Sydney Diavua

Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

Justin Fletcher

Excellerate Foundation

Janie Ginocchio

Southern Bancorp Community Partners

Robbye Good

Hope Enterprise Corporation

Anna Beth Gorman

Women’s Foundation of Arkansas

Regan Gruber Moffitt

The Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation (Board Treasurer)

Sarah Kinser

Arkansas Community Foundation

Lena Moore

Baptist Health Foundation

Mollie Palmer

Heart of Arkansas United Way

Hillis Schild

Arvest Bank

Deborah Temple

Communities Unlimited

Grant Wallace

Arkansas State Treasurer's Office

Abby Hughes Holsclaw

Senior Director

AFN Staff

Learn about Bank On Arkansas+

Arkansas Economic Recovery Strategy

At the behest of the Governor’s Arkansas Economic Recovery Task Force, Bank On Arkansas+ participated in a listening session led by Heartland Forward to provide AR AFN recommendations on the Entrepreneurship and Small Business strategy. Together they created a series of recommendations for an economic recovery strategy for Arkansas as we come out of COVID-19. READ THE RECOMMENDATIONS

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Child Tax Credit Webinar

On June 29, 2021, Bank On Arkansas+ co-hosted a webinar to help attendees learn more about the upcoming Child Tax Credit and how Arkansas families can access various tools, such as a certified Bank On account, to receive their monthly payment.  LEARN MORE

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Delta Owned: A Virtual Site Visit

As part of Arkansas AFN’s commitment to driving advancing access to capital to for minority owned small businesses in Arkansas, two AFN members — the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation and Communities Unlimited — partnered to launch Delta Owned. Delta Owned provides small grant capital to help micro-businesses and sole proprietors in the Delta region of Arkansas who have not been able to access state and federal COVID-19 relief dollars. We invite you to take a virtual tour of Delta Owned to learn more about the approach.

Capital. What Women Really Want:
Building Arkansas Women’s Wealth Through Business Ownership

A feature publication exploring the barriers women face and offers funders and financial institutions recommend for action. READ THE FEATURE

Press coverage of the report on ArkansasBusiness.com:  Report Says Women Face Barriers to Capital, Stifling Business Growth
Arkansas Democratic Gazette, Support for Women or read it here

BankOn Arkansas+ Family Economic Resilience Summit

On October 22, 2020, Arkansas AFN and Bank On Arkansas+ hosted a virtual summit designed to discuss the economic impacts of COVID-19 on families, small businesses, and communities. Attendees heard from national and local panelists and speakers who shared emerging lessons, tools, and resources to help support Arkansans as they navigate their own financial health and wellbeing during an unprecedented time.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE

Meeting the Entrepreneurs | Made in America

Watch the second and third episodes in a series of four documentaries produced by GoDaddy, featuring the work of AR AFN member Communities Unlimited.
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The videos are an effective commentary on entrepreneurship and its potential to close the racial wealth gap, and to generate more good jobs in communities long ignored.
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These are truly stories about “equity” and what entrepreneurship means to families of color and how business ownership helps immigrant families integrate into our economy. They tell the story of why life style businesses are so important to our economy and also to combat inequality.
  • Episode 2: Sequoia Williams – That’s So You Boutique in Little Rock, AR
  • Episode 3: Consuelo Rosales – Consuelo’s Cleaning Services – Jonesboro, AR