High Point officials have launched an initiative aimed at supporting minority and women-owned businesses in the city. 

The Thrive High Point program is being led by Business High Point - Chamber of Commerce, a public/private collaboration formed in 2015. The goal is to encourage and empower minority business owners and entrepreneurs.

According to a news release, the initiative is an outgrowth of this past summer's High Point Equity Project. That program provided non-traditional financing along with technical assistance, mentorship, and coaching.

Thrive High Point incorporates several new partnerships, beginning with High Point University's $500,000 challenge gift. A steering committee driven by local leaders led to a collaboration with the National Institute of Minority Economic Development.

The Institute is led by Guilford County native Dr. Bryle Henderson Hatch.

Other partners include the social innovation consulting firm Change Often and the Congdon Family Foundation, which has supported the creation of new downtown work and meeting spaces.

Officials say the ultimate goal of the Thrive program is to embody what they call “the diversity of an inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystem.”

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