JACKSONVILLE, NC (WNCT) — Jacksonville Onslow Economic Development Partnership, Inc. was granted a total of $125,000 this week.

Truist Foundation provided $100,000, which is meant to support racial and ethnic diversity in small businesses, women-owned businesses and entrepreneurs in Jacksonville and Onslow County. That donation was made on Nov. 16 and represents the first made to the new JOEDP Community Business Loan Fund.

According to Mark Sutherland, executive director of JOEDP, the donation of “seed funds,” will call more support to the organization.

“It is remarkable that Truist boldly stepped up to the plate, the first investor willing to capitalize the business loan fund, enabling the committee to immediately start deploying capital to small businesses in our community,” said Sutherland.

Chairman of the Loan Fund Committee Scott Riggs said that he is proud of the changes that are taking place in Onslow County.

“As Onslow County and the surrounding area continues to experience economic growth, the need for additional funding sources for small businesses has also grown,” Riggs said. “With the opportunity to engage potential dynamic partners like Truist Foundation… we are opening doors that we trust will lead to greater opportunity of success for local small businesses.”

(Duke Energy photo)

The other $25,000 was granted to JOEDP by Duke Energy through a commitment to supporting economic development and workforce initiatives.