As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, communities across Appalachia are banding together to pool resources and ideas for resilience. Here’s an inspiring example:
In the days following COVID-19 related shutdowns, the Appalachian Impact Fund, the Foundation for Appalachian Kentucky, and the Community Economic Development Initiative for Kentucky (CEDIK) at the University of Kentucky sprung into action. They raised almost half a million dollars, and created the Southeast Kentucky Downtown Business Stimulus Fund to help downtown businesses.
Drawing on ARC POWER support, this revolving loan fund and technical assistance program will support downtown revitalization efforts and entrepreneurial ecosystems across 10 counties in Southeastern Kentucky. The project is a partnership between the Foundation for Appalachian Kentucky and the Community Economic Development Initiative of Kentucky (CEDIK) to form the Appalachian Impact Fund (AIF).