We believe when communities are empowered to improve from the inside out, by building on their strengths rather than dwelling on their weaknesses, real physical, social, and economic health can be improved.
The Chicora-Cherokee community in North Charleston has long been considered one of the city’s most disadvantaged communities and has one of the highest child poverty rates in South Carolina. Many of its homes are substandard or abandoned, and it lacks a grocery store and other essential community assets.
But despite its landscape, the people of Chicora-Cherokee are working together to create change for their neighborhood. Their collective voice is loud and strong, offering opportunity for individual, family, and community growth. Together, they are transforming lives, and creating opportunity.
Metanoia, a non-profit located in the heart of Chicora-Cherokee, invests in neighborhood assets to build leaders, establish quality housing, and generate economic development in the neighborhood. Its approach is to focus on finding strengths, or assets, in the neighborhood and using them as building blocks for eventual success. By engaging with residents, listening to their history and recommendations, Metanoia is able to meet the needs of its residents to build a strong foundation for the community.
Fresh Future Farm is an urban farm and community food operation located in Chicora-Cherokee that works to stimulate the social and economic environment of the neighborhood. Its farm and retail outlet, along with a community-based education program, will create access to healthy, affordable food and job opportunities that will transform the current neighborhood into a more self-reliant, robust community.
SCCLF is proud to be a partner in transforming Chicora-Cherokee. To date, it has provided 5 loans totaling $403,809 to Metanoia for the construction, acquisition, and rehabilitation of 14 homes, and Fresh Future Farm won first place in our Feeding Innovation Business Plan Challenge.
Successful, long-term transformation encompasses a collaboration of community resources. On October 19th, we invite you to attend Celebrating 10 Years Transforming Lives, Creating Opportunity as part of our Thought Leader Speaker Series. Two-time Pulitzer Prize winning columnist for The New York Times, Nicholas Kristof, will share accounts of how people around the world are working to make their communities stronger, and how this type of work can be supported.