Terence Roberts, TATT Chairman
Upstate Economic Development Update
John Lummus, Upstate SC Alliance – Please see slides.
- Are there specific areas of the country you are targeting for attracting talent?- In the beginning, they identified 10 specific areas in the country. They’re expanding to 20 areas to target. They’re working with GVLToday because they have newsletters in those areas as well.
- Are the industry leaders you target those within SC or those that are nationally focused? (Not answered)
- Do you happen to know how the healthcare industry measures up for the Upstate? Is there a growth of health promotion interventions or wellness centers (both corporate based and free standing)? – The upstate healthcare providers are excellent and involved. From the recruitment side, it’s always a positive about the upstate healthcare availability.
- Is there anything the Upstate Entrepreneur Ecosystem can do to support the locally-owned businesses that make a location more attractive to the companies you recruit?Yes – part of their initiative is to help entrepreneurs get set in this area. Working with other local organizations (NEXT, Clemson, etc) to help with this effort.
- How do we look as a region as far as product and infrastructure go for companies looking to come to the Upstate? – Product is starting to dwindle a bit; we need more from private and public sectors. There has been a huge increase in the national developers to look into our region to do just that. Infrastructure will be a huge thing for the upstate in the future.
Bedrija Jazic, Director Refugee of Refugee and Immigrant Services, Lutheran Services Carolinas – Lutheran Services Carolinas is a faith-based organization that provides a large array of services. This Refugee and Immigrant Services program was closed in 2017 as the population they were helping were largely settled. It will be reopening to help resettle about 100 refugees from all over the world in January 2022: this includes children and families. They’re currently in 8 military bases across the US. It involves case management, employment services, and safe/welcoming homes. Engaging local organizations is a vital part of resettling these individuals; please reach out to Bedrijia with interest.
Brandon Baughn, World Relief Upstate – World Relief Upstate is working internationally to focus on resettlement of immigrants and refugees who were facing persecution. Recently, many refugees have come to the Upstate from the Democratic Republic of the Congo and their average vetting process has taken up to 16 years. They provide case management, affordable housing, furnishing a home, connecting with social services, help with job placement, create a supportive community, and aiding in self-sufficiency.
Questions: Tell us what the primary needs your organizations are seeking and the gaps you are seeing within our communities. How can we as individuals help? – Primary need is affordable housing that is close to the public transportation system. As an individual, you can help in many ways – share information in your network, share who the refugees are so people are familiar with them to dispel fear, create connections to potential employers, become advocates for the positive benefits that refugees offer our community, advocate to local officials, volunteer, and as always, provide funding when needed.
Tommy Sinclair, Circles Greenville – Circles Greenville helps people completely emerge from poverty, not just through a crisis moment. Partner middle income people (allies) with people experiencing poverty (leader) to break a generational cycle of poverty. There is a 12- week training program and then the groups are matched. They commit to an 18-month relationship between the leaders and allies. They walk step-by-step through their goals and the walk of meeting those goals: increase in social capital, resource development, job goals, etc.
Question: Is the threshold for poverty based on gross or net? Gross.
Video Recap: https://youtu.be/2t032gMv8WM