BankPlus, a member of the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas, last week was awarded FHLB Dallas’ 2017 CARE Award. An acronym that stands for Community Area Revitalization Efforts, the CARE Award recognizes Mississippi-based BankPlus’ affordable housing achievements over the past 10 years.
The inaugural award was announced at FHLB Dallas’ annual conference.
“Our members’ work in the community is a source of great pride for us at FHLB Dallas,” stated FHLB Dallas President and CEO Sanjay K. Bhasin, in a press release “BankPlus is a valued member, and the CARE award is a representation of our appreciation for their deep commitment toward development of their community.”
BankPlus is the largest certified Community Development Financial Institution in the United States. BankPlus Senior Vice President and Director of Community Development David Johnson said housing is one of the greatest needs in Mississippi.
“Unfortunately, many people in Mississippi don’t see home ownership as a viable option,” Johnson stated. “Our job as community bankers is to ensure that Mississippians are aware of their options when it comes to affordable home ownership. FHLB Dallas has been an excellent partner in helping us carry out that mission.”
Since 2007, BankPlus has invested more than $10.6 million in Mississippi communities in partnership with Irving-based FHLB Dallas using the Affordable Housing Program, as well as other grant programs offered by FHLB Dallas that focus on promoting and strengthening relationships between community-based organizations, small business development, home rehab for special-needs and elderly residents and down payment and closing cost assistance for first-time home buyers. Video
“I enjoy working in the community. I enjoy working with organizations that are making an impact in the community. FHLB Dallas provides us with programs that allow us to go out, work with those organizations and make an impact on the community,” stated Mark Ouellette, first vice president and director of the Affordable Housing Program at BankPlus.
As part of the award, FHLB Dallas will donate $7,500 to a nonprofit of BankPlus’ choice, Center for Social Entrepreneurship. The nonprofit’s mission is to enhance the quality of life for community residents through education, economic business development, affordable housing and community engagement. BankPlus has worked with CSE for the past two years by providing funds to sponsor an intern who assists the organization in carrying out its mission.
“We are dedicated to addressing the diverse issues affecting affordable housing and community engagement,” stated CSE Executive Director Shante Crockett. “Many people in the community will benefit from this generous donation and we are so thankful to BankPlus.”
FHLB Dallas annually returns 10 percent of its profits in the form of AHP grants to the communities served by its member institutions. AHP funding is utilized for a variety of projects, including home rehabilitation and modifications for low-income, elderly and special-needs residents; down payment and closing-cost assistance for qualified first-time homebuyers; and the construction of low-income, multifamily rental communities and single-family homes.
Jack Webb, BankPlus senior executive vice president and chief community banking officer, stated BankPlus is honored to receive the CARE award.
“BankPlus’ core purpose is enriching lives and building stronger communities,” he stated “Through the grants that we receive from FHLB Dallas, we’re able to improve the lives of many.”