TAMPA – The Fifth Third Foundation today announced a $100,000 philanthropic commitment to help address the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on businesses in Florida. The funds from the Fifth Third Foundation are pledged to Black Business Investment Fund (BBIF) Florida’s COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund.
“We are making this $100,000 philanthropic commitment to support small businesses in our region that have been affected by the pandemic over the past several months,” said Cary Putrino, North Florida regional president for Fifth Third Bank. “BBIF is a longstanding partner in providing loans, investments and education to our underserved business communities. We are proud to continue working with them to ensure the survival of small businesses in Florida.”
Putrino commends BBIF Florida for delivering economic growth, job creation and sustainability to the Florida region. Funds raised through BBIF’s COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund will be used to support businesses and to support the operational resiliency of the BBIF organization for loan loss reserves and operational liquidity.
“BBIF is committed to ensuring black and minority businesses survive COVID-19, and with Fifth Third Foundation’s donation, we have processed over 300 applications, distributing over $6.1 million in SBA Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans to 143 businesses in Florida helping to sustain 1,156 jobs,” said Inez Long, president and CEO of BBIF Florida. “Our team continues to work providing financial technical assistance to these loan clients through a series of webinars, podcasts and one-on-one consulting, helping them to plan for long-term resiliency and to navigate the PPP loan forgiveness process.”
About the Fifth Third Foundation
Established in 1948, the Fifth Third Foundation was one of the first charitable foundations created by a financial institution. The Fifth Third Foundation supports worthy causes in the areas of health and human services, education, community development and the arts in the states where Fifth Third Bank operates.