Promise Zone Updates

City of Minneapolis and Promise Zone

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May 24, 2018

Minneapolis Promise Zone Workmark

In this edition of Minneapolis Promise Zone Updates:

  • Funding Opportunity: Communities Thrive Challenge 
  • Regional Solicitation Application for Federal Transportation Funds
  • Affordable Housing Trust Fund Program Request for Proposals
  • Nexus' Boards & Commissions Leadership Institute Now Taking Applications
  • GreaterMSP Released 2018 Regional Indicators Dashboard
  • Watch Northside Storyville's Latest Episode
  • Social Wise Media Group is Offering a Social Media Special 
  • Blueprint Approved Institute Summer Cohort Request for Applications 
  • The Next Step Program is Hiring!
  • News, Events, and Jobs
  • Promise Zone Preference Points
  • About the Minneapolis Promise Zone

Funding Opportunity: Communities Thrive Challenge 

At The Rockefeller Foundation and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, we believe in an America where all people can earn enough to support their families, achieve financial security, and provide their children with more opportunities. Every day, local governments, businesses, and nonprofit leaders across the country are working to make this dream possible in their communities.

Yet all too often, these community-driven approaches are missed by those who could invest in them and help them reach more people. This is especially true for efforts in small cities, rural America, and places with high rates of poverty.

That’s why The Rockefeller Foundation and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative - with guidance from community leaders across the country - have created the Communities Thrive Challenge, a $10-million funding opportunity open to organizations that are working to expand economic opportunity for low-income and financially insecure people and communities in the United States.

After two rounds of review, including peer-to-peer evaluation and review by an expert panel, as many as 10 organizations will receive a $1 million grant, as well as best-in-class technical assistance and an opportunity to share their stories on a national stage. All 80 applicants who advance to the second round will receive an honorable mention, and 20 will be chosen as finalists. Each finalist that does not become a grantee will receive $5,000 in recognition of their great work.

Does your organization have a track record of expanding economic opportunity for low-income and financially insecure people in your community? If so, register for the Communities Thrive Challenge no later than Tuesday, June 12, 2018, at 5:00 p.m. Pacific. 

Following registration, organizations will then need to submit applications to take part in the Challenge, If your organization meets eligibility criteria, please apply for the Challenge no later than Tuesday, June 19, at 5:00 p.m. Pacific. 

Regional Solicitation Application for Federal Transportation Funds Opens May 14 

Projects support congestion relief, safety, transit advantages

Communities across the region can now apply for a portion of about $200 million in federal funds for local highway, bridge, transit, bicycle, and pedestrian projects. Whether for existing infrastructure or new improvements, projects focus on outcomes like moving more people more effectively, managing congestion, and improving air quality.

The Metropolitan Council’s Transportation Advisory Board (TAB) leads the process of soliciting, evaluating, and selecting submitted projects, then sends those projects recommended for funding to the Council for agreement. Applications are due on July 13, 2018, and the TAB is tentatively scheduled to approve funding recommendations in mid-January of 2019.

Sign up for online application training

Council staff will conduct online application training at Council Offices at 390 Robert St. in Saint Paul in the Lower Level Room C Computer Lab. Please contact Elaine Koutsoukos, TAB Coordinator, to reserve your computer station for one of the following dates.

  • Wednesday, May 23, from 9:00-10:30 a.m. or 2:00-3:30 p.m.
  • Thursday, May 31, from 1:00-2:30 p.m. or 3:00-4:30 p.m.
  • Friday, June 1, from 9:00-10:30 a.m.
  • Thursday, June 7, from 9:00-10:30 a.m.

More Information 

Affordable Housing Trust Fund Program Request for Proposals

The AHTF Program provides gap financing for affordable and mixed-income rental housing, housing production and preservation projects. The purpose of this program is to finance the production and preservation/stabilization of affordable and mixed-income rental housing projects in Minneapolis. Program funds are offered through an annual competitive RFP process.  Please direct any questions regarding the program or the funding application process to Carrie Flack at 612-673-5240.

Here is more information that further describes the AHTF Program:

The City of Minneapolis is soliciting development funding proposals for the Affordable Housing Trust Fund (AHTF) Program. The Program’s purpose is to help finance the production, preservation or stabilization of affordable rental housing in Minneapolis. The AHTF Request for Proposals (RFP), program information, funding proposal submittal requirements and application materials may be found here:

Funding proposals are being accepted between the date of this letter and 4:00 p.m., CDT, on July 3, 2018. Proposals delivered after this deadline will be returned without being reviewed. The order in which the proposals are received will be noted, and developers are encouraged to submit funding proposals before the deadline if possible. The City has the right to reject any and all applications at its sole discretion. Deliver or mail complete applications in accordance with the RFP to the following:
Minneapolis CPED

2018 Affordable Housing Trust Fund (AHTF) Request for Proposal Materials:

1. Cover Letter (PDF).
2. Request for Proposal (PDF).
3. Attachments (PDF).

More Information

Nexus' Boards & Commissions Leadership Institute (BCLI) Now Taking Applications

Nexus Community Partners is proud to announce that we are now seeking nominations for our sixth cohort for the Boards and Commissions Leadership Institute. 

The BCLI is a 7-month cohort leadership program that supports, trains and helps places people of color and other underrepresented community members on city and county publicly appointed boards and commissions that influence and impact equity in the Twin Cities Metro Area in economic development, health, housing, transit and workforce development.

In the past five years, The Twin Cities BCLI has trained 69 alumni, half of which have gone on to serve on boards and commissions at all levels of the state (local, regional, and state). We are excited to be recruiting a new cohort of leaders dedicated to equity work in the region and hope you will help us spread the word to friends and networks who want to be a part of a network of leaders on boards and commissions! We are pleased to add two new geographies to our nominations packet this year: welcome aboard, Roseville and Woodbury!

Learn more about the Nominations Packet (Application) Here

Please join us for the following Info Sessions to learn more about the nominations process and the program!

BCLI Info Sessions:

Info Session Two: Wednesday, May 27, 5:30-7 p.m. at Rondo Library, Flex Room, 461 Dale Street North St. Paul, MN 55104 

Info Session Three: Thursday, May 31, 5-6:30 p.m. at Ramsey County Library - Roseville, Community Room 2180 Hamline Avenue N. Roseville, MN 55113

Info Session Four: Wednesday, June 5, 5:30-7:00 p.m. at North Regional Library, South Half Room 1315 Lowry Ave N. Minneapolis, MN 55411

GreaterMSP Released 2018 Regional Indicators Dashboard 

This Regional Indicators Dashboard is a set of shared metrics that tracks the region’s change on critical economic, environmental, and social outcomes. Measuring change in the areas that matter most for continued long-term success will help improve our region’s economic competitiveness. 2018 is the fourth year of this effort.

MSP Trend: Reflects change between most current data available and the last prior data available. All data reflects the 16-county metropolitan statistical area (MSA) unless otherwise indicated. 

Peer Rank: 1=BEST, 12=WORST The 11-peer regions are listed on the reverse of this document. 

Peer Trend: (ARROW) Denotes change in MSP performance relative to previous year’s peer ranking.

  • Explore the digital dashboard here

screen shot for northside storyville episode 5

Watch Northside Storyville's Latest Episode 

Northside Storyville is back with it's fifth episode! 

Charles Adams, Jr. is a legend with legacy. He is a North High School alumnus like his father, mother and uncle before him. His devotion to the Northside community is genuine, "I love this school. I love this community. I'm a product of it," Adams explained, and for anyone that meets him this is plain to see. During his tenure as head coach of the North High Polars, Adams has done what no other coach has, become the first African American head coach to win a Minnesota state football championship. Still, he considers his real legacy to be his relationship with his students.  "Legacy is not about what I did," he said, "but about how I can help give back to my community." 

  • Watch the latest episode here

Social Wise Media Group is Offering a Social Media Special 

Social Wise Media Group is a digital agency that creates innovative, interactive marketing campaigns with impact.They partner with industry leaders like Facebook, Google, Constant Contact,Twitter and others to offer a truly effective arsenal of marketing strategies. They are available for both onsite and online projects.

Social Media Special Cost: $150 
Services Offered: 

  • Update/create Google Places 
  • Update/Create Yelp 
  • Create/update Facebook 
  • Create/update Instagram 
  • Custom Profile Banner (client provides logo) 
  • $50 to add additional profile 

More Information

Blueprint Approved Institute Summer Cohort Request for Applications 

The Blueprint Approved Institute (BPAI) summer cohort Request for Applications (RFA) is now open. The BPAI provides agencies selected to participate with intensive training, technical assistance, support, and skill-building opportunities. Agencies participating in the BPAI summer cohort will receive up to $2,000 to support their organizational capacity building and a $4,000 micro-grant to implement a youth violence prevention project. Selected agencies will be eligible to send up to three individuals to participate in the summer cohort activities. Learn more about the opportunity and apply

The Next Step Program is Hiring!

About Next Step

Next Step is a hospital-based violence intervention program partnership between the City of Minneapolis Health Department, Hennepin Health Systems (HCMC), and North Memorial Health Hospital. Next Step staff provide in-hospital intervention services to individuals ages 10-28 treated at HCMC or North Memorial for gunshot, stabbing, and violent assault injuries and their support networks in the crucial hours and days following an injury. Staff also provide longer-term community-based follow-up services to participants focused on goals such as housing, basic needs, employment, education, mental and physical health and wellness, and pro-social activities. This Minnesota Public Radio piece provides a glimpse into Next Step:

Positions Available

Next Step staff are employees of HCMC. HCMC is hiring part-time on-call hospital responders, full-time community-based staff, and a full-time Program Manager:

Part-time hospital responders - These positions are on call on some weekends, including some evenings and overnights. Hospital responders will respond to HCMC or North Memorial within 30 minutes of notification that a potential participant is admitted to the ED when on call. Specific responsibilities will include:

  • Positions are posted under Youth Program Mentor

Full-time community-based staff - full-time position providing community resources and case management services. Individuals will work some non-traditional hours, ensuring theyre available when participants are available. 

  • Position posted under Youth Program Developer

Next Step Program Manager - full time, exempt position overseeing program development, implementation and staff. 

  • Position is posted under Next Step Program Manager

Individuals interested in any of the positions can apply at



Minnesota's Housing Task Force Meeting #4 
Tues, May 29, 8:30 a.m. -1:30 p.m. 
Wilder Foundation, 451 Lexington Parkway N., Saint Paul 

Introduction to Starting Your Business Score 
Tues, May 29, 6-9 p.m. 
Northwestern Health Sciences University, 2501 W. 84th St., Bloomington 

One Family One Community: Housing Renters Forum 
Thu, May 31, 5:30-8 p.m. 
Urban Research and Outreach-Engagement Center, 2001 Plymouth Ave. N., Minneapolis 

Eat on the Avenue
Fri, June 1, 11 a.m. -2 p.m. 
Northside Economic Opportunity Network, 1007 W. Broadway Ave., Minneapolis  

Man Up Minneapolis 
Sat, June 9, 5-9 p.m. 
Sanctuary Covenant Church, 2018 Aldrich Ave. N., Minneapolis 

West Broadway Farmers Market Opening Day 
Fri, June 15, 3-7 p.m. 
2034 W. Broadway Ave. N., Minneapolis 


North@Work Manager 
The Center for Economic Inclusion 
More Information  

Racial Equity Consultant 
Minnesota Housing Partnership 
More Information

Paid North Star Black Cooperative Fellowship Intern 
Nexus Community Partners 
More Information 

Director of Strategic Development 
Nexus Community Partners 
More Information 

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Promise Zone Preference Points

If a discretionary funding opportunity indicates Promise Zone (PZ) preference points are available, please visit for additional information on forms and contacts to request preference point certification from the City of Minneapolis Promise Zone. Please submit your preference point request at least two weeks prior to the application deadline for Promise Zone certification approval consideration. 

If a funding opportunity does not indicate PZ preference points, you are still encouraged to contact the Promise Zone Manager, Julianne Leerssen (612-225-7721), about potential partnership opportunities to strengthen your application.

About the Minneapolis Promise Zone

Promise Zones are federally designated, high poverty communities where the federal government partners with local leaders to increase economic activity, improve educational opportunities, and leverage private investment. The Minneapolis Promise Zone (MPZ) plan is a comprehensive, community-driven revitalization strategy that builds on and aligns numerous initiatives to address the persistent unemployment, crime, housing blight, and poor educational outcomes that affect that area.

Contact information: Juli Leerssen, (612) 225-7721

For more information, please visit

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For reasonable accommodations, alternative formats, or to add content please contact Jennifer Melin at or by phone: 612-597-3406. People who are deaf or hard of hearing can use a relay service to call 311 at 612-673-3000. 

TTY users can call 612-673-2157 or 612-673-2626.

Para asistencia 612-673-2700, Yog xav tau kev pab, hu 612-673-2800, Hadii aad Caawimaad u baahantahay 612-673-3500.

"Welcome to North Minneapolis" mural by youth artists from Juxtaposition Arts and TATS CRU