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The Barracks Project Receives $50,000 Grant

The Barracks Project was selected as one of thirteen nonprofit organizations from around the world to receive a $50,000 grant for the purpose of advancing economic mobility.

The Covington-based agency received the funds from Bank of America.

The bank recently invited its employees to answer the question: “What would you like the power to do?”

Thousands of employees responded with the aim of putting one of the grants to work in their community.

David Gray, a financial advisor in the Merrill Lynch Fort Mitchell office answered that question with his submission that outlined his vision for The Barracks Project.

“Coming from a family with a long line of military veterans, one thing that has inspired me more than anything has been witnessing the true acts of selflessness and courage of individuals who sacrifice their lives to protect their loved ones,” said Gray. “During my time in the military and after deployment, I saw firsthand the ongoing battles veterans face during and after their career.  When Bank of America enabled me with the opportunity to help these vets beyond what I could normally do, I wanted nothing more than the power to help assist as many real-life heroes as I could.”

The mission of The Barracks Project is to support veterans returning to civilian life and provide assistance with housing, basic needs and job opportunities. According to Veterans Affairs, roughly 1.5 million service members are expected to transition out of the military over the next three to five years.

Bank of America has a longstanding commitment to U.S. military and veterans, having supported them for nearly 100 years with financial services, community outreach and national partnerships, support for veteran entrepreneurs and recruitment and development efforts, the company said in a news release.

Last year, Bank of America announced a $20 million lending program for veteran entrepreneurs to increase access to affordable loans to help jump-start and grow their businesses, supporting more than 2.5 million businesses in the U.S. that are majority-owned by veterans.  

In addition to the grant, Bank of America employees have participated in a month long hygiene drive to collect essential items that will be provided to local veterans and will also volunteer in a clean-up effort at a home currently being renovated for a veteran.

“The Barracks Project is a community effort run by all volunteers. With no paid staff at TBP, this $50,000 grant is going to touch the lives of many service members and veterans,” said Felicia Huesman, founder/president of The Barracks Project.

"We are thankful for David bringing well-deserved awareness to The Barracks Project. Since 1920 Bank of America has proudly supported the U.S. military and veterans and we are honored to continue that tradition with this grant,” said Jeneen Marziani, Ohio market president at Bank of America.

As part of being a great place to work, the company allows individuals up to two paid hours per week with manager approval for volunteering with nonprofit organizations. In 2018, Bank of America contributed $1.2 million in support of our veterans for jobs, education, wellness with a focus on invisible wounds of war and housing for veterans in transition.

-Staff report