JPMorgan Chase gives Kensington community groups $5 million

The grant is meant to spark positive growth in the troubled neighborhood.

Ian Bush
September 24, 2018 - 4:10 pm
A moderator (left) leads a discussion with Jamie Dimon (middle) and Mayor Jim Kenney (right).

Ian Bush | KYW Newsradio

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Community organizations in Kensington are receiving a $5 million grant from JPMorgan Chase, one of the country's biggest banks.  

The grant is designed to spark positive growth in the troubled neighborhood, which is part of JPMorgan’s Partnerships for Raising Opportunity in Neighborhoods program, a five-year, $125 million initiative. 

"They get more money into doing affordable housing, work skills, commercial ventures, entrepreneurs of color — all these things that if you do them right lift up communities," JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon said. 

He said the bank also is committed to opening 50 branches in Greater Philadelphia and, with it, about 300 jobs. In part, he credits tax reform, which saves big banks billions, but Dimon admits it's not a boom economy for all.

"We just gotta go back a little bit to the good ol' can-do, get-it-done American way," Dimon added. 

Casey O'Donnell, president and CEO of Impact Services in Kensington, is rolling up his sleeves. 

"It's going to allow residents of that neighborhood to own their neighborhood," he said. 

His nonprofit is one of the four beneficiaries of the grant, which will be used for renovating properties and small business loans. It'll have a tangible impact, says Mayor Jim Kenney. 

"This effort shows faith in our city that we can turn around our problems and have a better quality of life for everybody," the mayor said.