GROW South Dakota Makes an Invaluable Impact on the State
Monday, October 14, 2019
GROW South Dakota changes lives by helping individuals and families achieve their goals of buying homes, starting businesses and maintaining a thriving economy. The organization’s assistance has benefited the state for over 50 years, and it continues to positively impact South Dakota daily.
Three separate nonprofits focusing on housing, community and economic development operate under the umbrella name GROW South Dakota: Northeast South Dakota Community Action Program (NESDCAP, founded 1966), Northeast South Dakota Economic Corporation (NESDEC, 1978) and Grow South Dakota (2007).
Since the founding of NESDCAP, GROW SD has invested over $80 million in single and multi-family housing. Over 9,300 households have received much needed home repairs and more than 18,800 households have received financial and homebuyer education and help. The organization has invested over $78.8 million in small businesses and entrepreneurs across the state. Over 2,140 small business loans have been made to new and existing businesses. These business loans have helped create or maintain more than 13,200 jobs. GROW SD has invested more than $60 million in South Dakota communities, including support for local and regional economic development agencies.
While these numbers are impressive, what is most important is the individual, life changing help GROW SD offers to the residents of South Dakota.
GROW South Dakota Invests in Local Entrepreneurs
GROW SD provides financial and technical assistance to entrepreneurs hoping to open or expand a business. These efforts make the dreams of local entrepreneurs come true, bring new jobs, and support economic development in the state.
The U.S. Small Business Administration named Samantha Miller its Small Business Woman of the Year in South Dakota in 2019. She is the owner of The Farmer's Wife Boutique in Aberdeen, SD. Miller took out loans from GROW South Dakota for inventory and working capital to grow her business. In addition to this financial assistance, GROW SD loan officers provided technical assistance with ideas to help improve Miller’s business.
Miller appreciates the assistance she has received from GROW SD.
“Your support means the world,” she told a GROW SD staff person. “I’m so incredibly blessed to have you in my life and this crazy business venture.”
Samantha Miller is only one of the thousands of business owners GROW SD has assisted in the journey of creating a successful business.
GROW South Dakota Provides Homebuying Assistance and Education
Through loans and homebuyer education, GROW SD helps families who might not otherwise be able to find financing become homeowners.
Michael Raver and his wife had always talked about raising their children in a happy, stable environment in South Dakota. With a new baby on the way and already being a family of four, they wanted to find a bigger place to call home. They quickly found one they loved in Custer, South Dakota.
Despite having a stable income and no debt, they were having trouble coming up with the funds for a down payment and the baby’s due date was scheduled for the day of closing. They turned to GROW SD for help, and the organization quickly came through with down payment assistance through a zero-interest deferred loan.
Now, Raver and his wife wake up each morning amazed at how fulfilling their lives are.
“We can’t express how grateful we are, or how important programs like GROW are to preserving rural communities and culture,” Raver says.
GROW South Dakota Provides Weatherization and Home Improvements to Those in Need
In addition to making dreams come true for entrepreneurs and hopeful homeowners, GROW SD provides weatherization and home improvements to those in need. The organization has performed over $25,000,000 worth of weatherization projects in 7,500 homes in the state. The services provided are free, grant-funded improvements like providing insulation and air sealing and replacing inefficient appliances.
Elaine Bailey loves her home after GROW SD installed new windows and insulation and made other energy efficiency improvements.
“I can comfortably live in my home now without being wrapped in an electric blanket. I can sit next to any window and enjoy daylight and sunshine without freezing.” Bailey says.
A cancer survivor, she added, “These monetary savings allow me to purchase my medications; and my overall health is improving due to my access to daylight, through my new windows. I am very grateful for all of the help the GROW South Dakota personnel extended to me.”
GROW SD serves the entire state of South Dakota. They secure stable housing in the communities, create businesses and area jobs, and improve energy efficiency and weatherization for those in need. Without generous donors, these improvements would not be possible. To learn more about supporting GROW South Dakota and the organization’s impact, visit www.growsd.org.