August 2016

Salvation Army Birmingham Center of Hope

THE PROJECT

In August 2016, AMCREF Community Capital provided $11 million of NMTC financing to The Salvation Army of Birmingham (“SA”). SA, a nonprofit that has continued to rebuild the lives of men, women, children and families every day for the past 116 years. SA was seeking capital to construct the Center of Hope (the “Center”), over 110,000 square feet across multiple buildings to expand their existing services to low-income people.  The Center will provide emergency and transitional housing, workforce development, education services, life skills training career center including GEDs, meal services, and an administration building. Over 13,000 people will benefit from SA’s services annually and 100% of these are low‐income individuals. The SA had been operating out of 50-year-old facilities that continued to deteriorate and did not accommodate the current services provided. Over the last decade, the outreach with individual and family transitions from difficult circumstances back into the workforce has grown significantly. The increased capacity of the new Center will provide a safe and secure place for those in need in the Birmingham community.

 

COMMUNITY IMPACT

  • Job Creation and Support: Total of 66 FTEs, including 55 retained and 11 created. Wages average over $31,594 (48% above the local living wage) plus full benefits. Center will enable SA to create a new job training program serving at least 250 hard-to-employ individuals annually. The program is a collaborative effort with various regional training programs / community colleges.
  • Environmental Benefits: SA’s operations divert 1,421 tons of waste per year from landfills, including recycling over 2.8mm pieces per year of various consumer goods such as clothing, electronics, furniture and household items. Center will incorporate numerous LEED features, including reuse of many existing building components/materials; LED lighting; work site recycling; resource efficient landscaping; highly efficient HVAC system; and a public green space/park facility
  • Community Support and Impacts: SA currently provides services to an average of 13,000 individuals per year, 100% of whom are LIPs. Annually, 6,678 individuals will avoid homelessness altogether because of the assistance they received at SA, 3,279 individuals will find shelter at the Center and 214,286 meals will be serviced. The Center will increase the number of transitional beds provided by 52% (164 total beds). About 90% of the FTEs are local hires and 75% are accessible to individuals without a college degree. Center will help revitalize an area with high unemployment (23%) and low median family incomes (49.7%)
  • Economic / Catalytic Effects: The Center has significant community support from the Mayor of Birmingham, The United Way and extensive capital campaign donations from local groups. The Center is also strongly supported by neighborhood groups for renovating formerly vacant, blighted properties, bringing new life to a depressed neighborhood. SA’s programs result in a decreased demand for municipal social support benefits, an increase in the local economy through additional tax revenue and job training programs result in increased wages for LIPs.