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Financial center launches in North Omaha focusing on black-owned businesses

Published: Aug. 31, 2020 at 9:42 AM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - The Carver Legacy Center, a black-owned financial center, is launching a financial center near 24th and Lake that will focus on building black wealth.

The Center will house four components including the Carver Financial Collaborative, Accelerator Hub, Pop-Up Incubator, and Legacy Wealth Center.

More help is on its way to an economically depressed part of the city to help businesses grow.

The new Carver Legacy Center will be located in the old Carver Savings and Loan, it opened in the 1940′s and was Nebraska’s first black-owned financial institution.

Organizers say this is the first step to building wealth in North Omaha.

For decades North Omaha has been an economically challenged part of the city. The area needs more businesses and more homeownership.

It’s a one-stop-shop to help grow business and homeownership in the area.

“You need to have a strong business you need to have homeownership… and you also need to be able to save and invest your money so you can on control your own destiny,” said Willie Barney, founder.

For about 16 years Galen Anding and his wife Dr. Michelle Chang have owned a dental office. They didn’t have the help The Carver Legacy Center will offer when they started out.

“When you go out and meet with larger banks if the banks don’t have necessarily an agenda or an intent to loan to small businesses or maybe that’s not their target audience or in terms of black-owned business, then it may be more of a challenge,” said Anding. “That’s some of what we ran into.”

The Carver Center will focus on creating black wealth and will focus on African Americans and the North Omaha community. Organizers say the community will be asked to get on board and help by making an investment.

“The Carver Legacy account, we encourage people to create a savings account and we want them to leave the money there so it can be leveraged to loans to help black businesses specifically, and help North Omaha residents become homeowners, and to build homes and financial empowerment,” said Barney.

Dr. Chang says if everyone works together, real change can be made in the northern part of the city.

“So, I think with this bank and this opportunity we’ll have some support to give to our community so that they can utilize these buildings, especially the ones that are empty,” said Chang.

Willie and Yolanda Barney along with Martin and Lynnel Williams are founders of the center, they will work together with a number of organizations including the American National Bank.

Individuals, businesses, organizations, and ministries will be able to open accounts at the end of September. Organizers say all accounts will be fully insured by the FDIC.

For more information go to www.carverlegacycenter.com or call 402-490-1542.

This is a developing story. Stay with 6 News for updates.

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