Debut of a financial home sweet home in Bed-Stuy

New 4,000-Square-Foot Economic Solutions Center Opens in Restoration Plaza

September 27, 2016 By James Harney Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Officials, including Councilmember Robert Cornegy Jr., (center, rear) and Bedford-Stuyvesant Restoration president/CEO Colvin Grannum (front, third from right), participated in the ribbon-cutting for the new Economic Solutions Center at Restoration Plaza. Photos: Margot Jordan/Courtesy Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation
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A gleaming new facility is now open in the heart of Bedford-Stuyvesant, and many local residents are hoping the bucks start there.

Ribbon-cutting ceremonies were held last week for a new 4,000-square-foot home for Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation’s Economic Solutions Center, which has won awards for hosting financial counseling, workforce development and social services support programs in the ever-evolving central Brooklyn area.

“The Economic Solutions Center is one of the most successful programs Restoration offers. Its staff guides, supports and encourages individuals and families in our communities onto the path towards careers, economic stability and upward mobility,” said Colvin Grannum, president and CEO of Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation. “Last year, the center served more than 7,000 people. With this new state-of-the-art, highly-visible, ground-level presence in the heart of Restoration Plaza, we will assist many, many more people move themselves and families toward their dreams and aspirations.”

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The new Economic Solutions Center was funded by the Home Depot home improvement conglomerate and the Robin Hood Foundation, a charitable organization that combines investment principles and philanthropy to assist programs that target poverty in New York City.

“The Bedford Stuyvesant Corporation’s Economic Solutions Center is doing a truly remarkable job helping families in need to get on the path to upward mobility,” said Steve Lee, managing director for income security at the Robin Hood Foundation.

Previously, the center’s functions had been spread across two locations at Restoration Plaza; the new facility is a one-stop shopping site that provides such services as job training and placement, free tax preparation and personal financial management and debt reduction.

In the past year, say Restoration Corp. officials, the Economic Solutions Center placed close to 450 residents in jobs and helped generate more than $15 million in cumulative benefits for the community through health insurance programs, the Supplemental Nutrition Allowance Program and the Earned Income Tax Credit.

For the second year in a row, the Economic Solutions Center was honored as the Data Driven Service Provider of the Year by the NYC Center for Economic Opportunity. In addition, it has been recognized as one of the top 12 financial coaching programs in the nation by the Annie E. Casey Foundation.

Councilmember Robert E. Cornegy Jr. was also on hand for the event.

“Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation’s effort in providing quality programming through the Economic Solutions Center,” Cornegy (D-Bedford-Stuyvesant, Crown Heights) said, “is essential to the future growth and vitality of our community.”


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