Nonprofit earns $500K grant


LINC UP is a nonprofit in southeast Grand Rapids focused on "holistic community revitalization that is centered on creating impact in the lives of people and the fabric of neighborhoods." Photo via

A local economic development nonprofit has been awarded a $500,000 grant to support its neighborhood revitalization projects.

Grand Rapids-based LINC UP received a Project Reinvest grant to support the nonprofit’s initiative to invest in the Madison Square neighborhood, which is still reeling from the 2009-12 foreclosure crisis.

The grant will allow LINC UP to build affordable housing on vacant lots formerly occupied by foreclosed and blighted homes.

“LINC UP has the social infrastructure that allows us to identify the needs of our neighborhoods — that and our strong grassroots ties in the community made this grant a great fit for our organization,” LINC UP Executive Director Jeremy DeRoo said.

The Project Reinvest Neighborhood funds will be used to build five new single-family homes in Madison Square and renovate 1258 Madison Ave. SE to continue developing local construction companies. Construction has already begun on two of the five homes via LINC UP’s partnership with Grand Rapids Community College’s Construction Trades.

“The opportunities provided to us by this grant truly represent just about every aspect of LINC UP’s work in the community,” DeRoo said. “We’re honored to have been selected and are ready to maximize on the positive impact it has the potential to have on the Grand Rapids community and our neighborhoods.”

The one-time grant was one of 55 awarded nationwide and one of four granted in Michigan.

Project Reinvest grants were designed to provide support for housing counseling, neighborhood stabilization, foreclosure prevention and similar programs.

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