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Sponsored By Cross River Bank

 Cross River Bank (“Cross River”), a technology-driven financial services organization that provides core infrastructure and embedded financial solutions, today announced, as part of its Making Waves with Cross River program, expanded partnerships with both Operation HOPE and The Memorial Foundation in order to bring access to financial resources and increased economic inclusion to communities across the country. 

“Our partners at Operation HOPE and The Memorial Foundation have dedicated themselves to empowering individuals and communities to deliver a more inclusive future for all,” said Gilles Gade, Founder, President, and CEO of Cross River. “For Cross River, giving back comes first, and we are grateful for the opportunity to double down on our commitment.”

Cross River and Operation HOPE have been partners for more than five years, and now, the two will expand their community-based approach to financial wellness, specifically through HOPE Inside, an award-winning model of community uplift at another location. HOPE Inside brings coaches to bank branches, providing in-person and virtual financial coaching, educational content, and solutions through financial dignity programming to empower individuals with the financial knowledge and tools they need.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Cross River and Operation HOPE partnered to provide resources to individuals and community partners, which included virtual financial literacy courses, small business development workshops, and the joint Entrepreneur Training Program (“ETP”), from which over 100 entrepreneurs have already graduated. Having seen the success of these programs in its Brooklyn, New York branch footprint, Cross River and Operation HOPE are now expanding these programs to Cross River’s Teaneck, New Jersey branch to deliver these life-changing services to more individuals to help them solve every day financial challenges and create a more secure future.

“For so many Americans, these are trying times. Through our partnership with Cross River we are providing critical virtual financial literacy and coaching services to help them navigate the economic impacts of COVID-19,” said John Hope Bryant, Founder, Chairman, and Chief Executive Officer of Operation HOPE. “We remain committed to equipping individuals and business owners with sustainable tools that allow them to tackle their unique financial challenges—and ultimately thrive.”

Cross River also announced an expanded partnership with The Memorial Foundation to support the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Social Justice Fellowship Program, which unites like-minded emerging leaders from across the nation who share an unwavering commitment to social justice and who have embraced opportunities to advance change through leadership. Fellows possess a strong entrepreneurial spirit with a focus on improving the conditions of underserved communities and are empowered to build an intentional coalition of support with leaders across the nation, explore high impact practices that impart change, and develop an understanding of leadership and advocacy for long-term, sustainable community advancement. Last Wednesday, the Foundation hosted its anniversary gala in Washington titled “Moving the Dream Forward …Forever a Stone of Hope,” celebrating the foundation’s inaugural class of social justice fellows.

“As we celebrate our 10th anniversary and the work of Martin Luther King, we are also celebrating the foundation’s inaugural class of social justice fellows, our leaders of the future,” said Harry Johnson Sr., President and CEO of The Memorial Foundation. “Dr. King represented justice, opportunity, and most importantly, change, and we are immensely grateful to our community partners like Cross River for their unwavering support in continuing his mission.”

These two initiatives are part of Making Waves with Cross River, a campaign dedicated to small businesses and entrepreneurs. Coming off the success of Cross River’s 2020-2021 Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), the campaign is specifically focused on supporting diverse small businesses and empowering entrepreneurs who are serving their communities and creating jobs. It encompasses a number of initiatives in conjunction with community partners including grant programs, fellowships, events, and small business support.

To learn more, and to get involved, please visit

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