This blog post is part two in a two-part series on building assets and wealth among Native Americans as a means to advance financial stability in low-income communities around the country. The first part is available here. The blogs describe how and why the Northwest Area Foundation (NWAF) supports nonprofits in their efforts to reduce poverty and achieve sustainable prosperity in eight states across the upper Midwest and Pacific Northwest. The blogs are authored by Kevin Walker, CEO and President.
On one of the most storied streets in urban Native America, you can see a dynamic future taking shape. Colorful banners along Franklin Avenue in Minneapolis proclaim the only Native American urban business district in the country. Established in 2010, the American Indian Cultural Corridor features five Native-owned businesses, including a tribally owned bank. The Corridor, reminiscent of New York’s Little Italy or San Francisco’s Chinatown, spans a half mile of a previously crime-ridden, poverty-stricken neighborhood. Culturally relevant concepts and programs, rooted in the community, are making it possible for residents to build their assets by opening businesses, developing job skills, and owning a home.