Mountain BizWorks opens application for Opportunity Appalachia North Carolina grant funding

Press release from Mountain BizWorks

Mountain BizWorks, lead partner for North Carolina, is now accepting applications for the new round of Opportunity Appalachia technical assistance funding. The Opportunity Appalachia program provides targeted support for downtown and rural development to build entrepreneurial communities where local business can thrive, creating quality jobs for residents, and revitalizing local economies. In this round, six high-impact economic development projects in Western North Carolina will be selected to receive $40,000 – $75,000 for technical assistance to prepare for investment.

To date, Opportunity Appalachia is working with 58 projects in Central Appalachia to secure $470MM in financing and create 2,700 quality jobs. “Rural communities often struggle to attract large-scale investment to their areas, and Opportunity Appalachia works to support those visionary projects,” said Matt Raker, Executive Director of Mountain BizWorks. “The previously funded projects will have an incredible impact on the WNC economy in the years to come, and we look forward to seeing more promising projects for this 2024 round.”

Awarded funds are designed for pre-development work, engaging technical assistance experts on topics like architectural design and engineering, business planning, market studies, investment pitches, financial projections, and financial structuring.

The expanded program targets real estate projects that support:

  • Downtown Development
  • Manufacturing
  • Heritage Tourism and Recreation
  • Food Systems
  • Healthcare
  • Education
  • Clean Energy
  • Affordable Housing

“All of our partners have a shared purpose: to strengthen the local capacity to attract and absorb capital and bring new investments into central Appalachia,” shared Donna Gambrell, President and CEO of Appalachian Community Capital, in the recent North Carolina launch webinar. ”We are just thrilled to continue providing targeted technical assistance and critical support for downtown and rural development efforts that work to build strong and diverse local economies, especially in underserved communities.”

Applications must be received by April 12, 2024. Applicants looking for support through the process should submit a pre-application form to Mountain BizWorks by March 29, 2024. To view the informational webinar and see past NC projects, please visit

Opportunity Appalachia, a program of Appalachian Community Capital, is supported by funding from Appalachian Regional Commission, U.S. Treasury CDFI Fund, Truist, Dogwood Health Trust, The Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation, US Bank, and M&T Bank.

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