This week, nonprofit Generating Income for Tomorrow (GIFT) opened its new business center located at 5008 Prospect Ave. to further support the city’s local Black-owned businesses.

For the past two years, GIFT has awarded grants to numerous local businesses located East of Troost Ave. with a goal of strengthening and building wealth in Kansas City’s Black community.

Since it’s inception based on the collaborative giving concept of “if 15,000 people donated $10 per month,” the organization has been able to award more than $200,000 in grants to small businesses. Those grants have helped businesses in the urban core stay open, create more jobs and achieve financial stability.

With the opening of its business center, GIFT is now able to reach more local businesses who at this time may not qualify for or be ready to apply for a grant..

The business center offers free co-working spaces, a photography studio and access to professionals from companies like OCD Financial and Lead Bank who will provide services like accounting, bookkeeping, marketing and banking.

There are no restrictions to receive services and it’s completely free of charge. You can walk in and receive the support you need.

“Opening this business center, we are able to expand the number of businesses we’re able to help,” said co-founder Brandon Calloway. “We’re able to get the additional resources that these businesses need to grow.”

Karis Harrington, chief of business development for GIFT said it’s no coincidence the business center is located on Prospect Avenue, East of Troost Ave. 

“We’re here intentionally,” she said.

The business center is located in one of GIFT’s targeted support areas.  Of those targeted areas, this one has the highest concentration of both Black people living in poverty and Black entrepreneurs that may need GIFT’s services.

“We’re right on Prospect and we’re taking our city back,” said GIFT co-founder Cornell Gorman.

To donate to GIFT, visit their website here.

Jazzlyn "Jazzie” is the former senior reporter for our team, who joined the company in 2020 in the midst of the pandemic, through the Report for America service program. For the past two years, she covered...

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