Milestone Expansion of HOPE Inside’s Financial Coaching Model for Underserved Communities Coincides with Today’s Annual U.S. Treasury Freedman’s Bank Forum
ATLANTA—October 4, 2022 – Operation HOPE, Inc., the nation’s largest non-profit dedicated to financial empowerment for underserved communities, today announced that it has established its 200th HOPE Inside office location. This coincides with the U.S. Treasury Department’s Annual Freedman’s Bank Forum, featuring Vice President Kamala Harris and Secretary of the Treasury Janet L. Yellen and highlighting the Administration’s efforts to increase economic opportunity and growth for communities of color. Inspired by the work of Operation HOPE and HOPE Inside and at the request of its Founder, Chairman and CEO John Hope Bryant, then-Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew established the annual Freedman’s Bank Forum and oversaw the renaming of the Treasury Annex Building to the Freedman’s Bank Building.
“Today, Vice President Harris and Treasury Secretary Yellen’s participation in the annual Freedman’s Bank Forum continues to highlight the nation’s efforts to support Black and minority-owned businesses and individuals by empowering them with the tools and knowledge to create their own wealth. Since the inaugural Freedman’s Bank Forum seven years ago, this good work has continued through three different Presidential Administrations. We applaud the Treasury Department, Secretary Yellen and Deputy Secretary Adeyemo for recognizing the importance of the Freedman’s Bank mission and for continuing this legacy on behalf of the Biden Administration,” said John Hope Bryant, Chairman, Founder, and CEO of Operation HOPE. “We are proud of HOPE Inside’s parallel efforts to support low-income communities and communities of color in achieving financial empowerment. In reaching this distinct milestone of 200 HOPE Inside locations, we hope to continue building on this model, ultimately bringing our proven offerings and coaching skills to 1,000 locations across America in the next couple of years.”
Launched in March 1994, the award-winning HOPE Inside model serves clients including individuals, small business owners, disaster survivors and employees with personalized coaching and financial education to equip them with knowledge and tools to create a secure future. Programs and services are offered at no cost to the client and are administered across 200 office locations, which serve an additional 600 satellite sites. HOPE Inside locations are situated inside major bank branches to support individuals and small business owners, and inside corporations and municipal offices to serve as a resource and benefit to employees.
The latest location is in partnership with a leading commercial bank in a community with an average credit score significantly below the national and regional averages. Operation HOPE has partnered with global corporations including Delta Air Lines, UPS and Uber as well as leading global financial institutions including Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Truist, US Bank, and Santander and regional banks including First Horizon, Regions and Fulton to deliver HOPE Inside programming and services for customers and employees.
As of the end of last year, HOPE Inside has served more than 4 million clients through offerings including credit and money management coaching, mortgage application assistance, entrepreneur and small business training, financial disaster preparation and recovery, and youth financial literacy programs. HOPE Inside has worked to increase social mobility and intergenerational wealth by assisting clients on their path to homeownership through securing more than $2 billion in mortgages. HOPE Inside has also helped clients increase credit scores by an average of 46 points, reduce debt by an average of $2,600 per client, and increase savings by an average of $300 per client in one year. In addition, HOPE Inside has assisted entrepreneurs and small business owners of color to secure significant funding for their enterprises.
Inspired by the model of the Freedman’s Bank, the post-Civil War savings bank created to support the financial futures of the formerly enslaved, HOPE Inside continues to address the financial needs of low-income communities and communities of color. Today, HOPE Inside operates in nearly all of the same states where the Freedman’s Bank operated in the post-Civil War Reconstruction era, and it has accelerated its growth in the post-COVID and racial reckoning period spanning the last two years.
About Operation HOPE, Inc.
Since 1992, Operation HOPE has been moving America from civil rights to “silver rights” with the mission of making free enterprise and capitalism work for everyone—disrupting poverty for millions of low and moderate-income youth and adults across the nation. Through its community uplift model, HOPE Inside, which received the 2016 Innovator of the Year recognition by American Banker magazine, Operation HOPE has served more than 4 million individuals and directed more than $3.2 billion in economic activity into disenfranchised communities—turning check-cashing customers into banking customers, renters into homeowners, small business dreamers into small business owners, minimum wage workers into living wage consumers, and uncertain disaster victims into financially empowered disaster survivors. Operation HOPE recently received its eighth consecutive 4-star charity rating for fiscal management and commitment to transparency and accountability by the prestigious non-profit evaluator, Charity Navigator. For more information: OperationHOPE.org. Join the conversation on social media at @operationHOPE.
Mendel Communications LLC