DMCU and Eastern Market Corporation Announce $40,000 Grant Partnership to Grow Small Food Business Programs
Diversified Members Credit Union (DMCU) has announced a partnership with Eastern Market Corporation to expand and create opportunities for small businesses in the local food industry in Southeast Michigan. The partnership is made possible through a $40,000 grant from the Michigan Credit Union Foundation.
The grant is being used to support two of Eastern Market Corporation’s programs: Grow Eastern Market (GEM) and Eastern Market Growing Communities (EMGC).
“Eastern Market is excited to join a new partnership with Diversified Members Credit Union.” said Eastern Market Corporation President Dan Carmody. “Their support is essential for two programs that support the growth of small businesses.”
GEM helps to connect regional farmers/producers with wholesale buyers, from local chef-owned restaurants and grocers. Working as a food hub, GEM distributes directly from small farmers in SE Michigan. GEM orders from multiple farms on a weekly basis for restaurants, retailers and other business owners who are interested in purchasing locally.
EMGC provides matching micro-grants to growers, vendors, and merchants of Eastern Market. In the past six years, EMGC has invested $550,000 in projects that revitalize small business development. DMCU will not only support the project with funds but with support for grantees seeking lines of credit.
“We are extremely proud to partner with Eastern Market and to offer support to these two great programs. Nothing is more gratifying than helping local small business owners thrive,” said DMCU President/CEO Kathie Trembath. “None of it would be possible without the help of the Michigan Credit Union Foundation, and we want to thank them for helping us make this program a reality.”
A portion of the grant money was used to purchase a refrigerated truck so that GEM may ensure food safety, increase delivery days, expand its reach, and connect entrepreneurs, chefs, restaurants, communities and schools to farmers and makers.
DMCU will also provide low-cost financial services, as well as financial education, to small business owners and entrepreneurs and make business accounts more accessible.