City adding $1M to neighborhood activation program

 Grant awards range from $20,000 – $200,000 

 DENVER – June 13, 2023 – Denver Economic Development & Opportunity (DEDO) is launching a second round of its Neighborhood Activation Program with a $1M investment. Delivered through DEDO’s Neighborhood Equity & Stabilization division and using American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) dollars, the program will foster equitable recovery by funding events and beautification projects in identified business corridors that drive foot traffic,encourage people to eat/shop locally, and celebrate the uniqueness of each community. The program funds nonprofits, community groups, and businesses to implement projects. Applications are open through Monday, July 17, 2023. 

“While Denver’s overall recovery is encouraging, there remain disparities across our city in how businesses,particularly small and locally owned businesses, have been able to rebuild their customer base, revenue, and sustainability,” said Mayor Michael B. Hancock. “By providing funding directly to neighborhoods, community groups and businesses in need, we’re able to unite business owners, their customers, and area residents for a stronger, more resilient Denver.” 

“We are thrilled to bring this program back,” said Jen Morris, DEDO Executive Director. “This second round of funding will bring the city’s investment to $3.15M. Whether it is an event, festival, or art installation, this program is showcasing the uniqueness of our business corridors with the goal of stimulating the micro-economies within our communities.” 

As with the previous grant round, NEWSED Community Development Corporation is the city’s contracted partner to deliver the program. NEWSED’s role is conducting community outreach, providing technical assistance during the application period, application evaluation, and managing the dispersement of funds.

“It is so rewarding to be part of the city’s Neighborhood Activation Program. While coaching and supporting small business and neighborhood applicants, we are moving toward tangible results for us all to enjoy,” said Cecilia Cervantes, program manager for NEWSED. 

Those interested in applying are encouraged to review application requirements and to join available information sessions. Information sessions and fliers are available in English, Spanish, and Vietnamese. View the application, fliers, and information session details here. Application evaluation factors, among others,include location in a NEST neighborhood and also scoring less than .89 in the Denver Neighborhood Recovery Index. 

 About Denver Economic Development & Opportunity 

Denver Economic Development & Opportunity is creating an economy that works for everyone. Learn more at 

About the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) 

Denver’s plan for recovery includes direct distribution of $308 million in ARPA Local Relief Funds. Denversolicited and received feedback from over 12,000 residents, Denver City Council, city agencies, the Mayor’sStimulus Advisory Committee, and the Mayor’s Economic Recovery Council to inform the use of the city’s firstround of ARPA funds. Federal law requires distribution of the funds by 2026. 

About NEWSED Community Development Corporation

NEWSED’s primary focus has been to solve long-term economic problems in disadvantaged communities bysecuring and coordinating resources for neighborhood revitalization, developing needed shopping areas and

services, fostering minority and neighborhood business ownership, job retention and creation, increasing homeownership and affordable rental opportunities, neighborhood organizing and hosting cultural events and activities. Learn more at