Business Roundup: Nazareth Children's Home gets Food Lion Foundation grant
Nazareth Children’s Home has received $5,000 from the Food Lion Charitable Foundation.
Nazareth Children’s Home will use the gift to offset the rising costs of its yearly nutritional budget for its children.
“The children, staff and board of trustees at Nazareth are very appreciative of Food Lion and its Charitable Foundation’s continued commitment toward the betterment of our children’s lives,” said Josh Regan, director of development for Nazareth.
For 103 years, the mission of Nazareth Children’s Home has been to provide a stable, loving, Christian environment for children ages 4-18, who have been severely abused, neglected or abandoned, to maximize their opportunities for growth and development while away from their home setting.
It is also the purpose of the program to work with the families toward returning the children to their natural families as soon as possible.
Nazareth is currently home for more than 100 children, and this gift from the Food Lion Charitable Foundation will be used to help offset annual nutritional costs, which continue to increase, as do the number of children in care at Nazareth.
Established in 2001, the Food Lion Charitable Foundation provides financial support for programs and organizations dedicated to improving the communities in which Food Lion operates.
The foundation places an emphasis on the support of primary and secondary education, feeding the hungry and organizations that enhance the quality of life in Food Lion’s local communities.
Food Lion LLC operates more than 1,300 supermarkets, either directly or through affiliated entities, under the names of Food Lion, Bloom, Bottom Dollar Food, Harveys and Reid’s.
Food Lion LLC employs approximately 74,000 associates in 11 Southeast and Mid-Atlantic states.
The Salisbury-Rowan Economic Development Commission board of directors will hold its July meeting at 3 p.m. Wednesday at the Gateway Building, 204 E. Innes St.
The meeting date was moved back a week from the normal meeting time.
Credit is readily available in Rowan County for small business lending, but there are limitations.
So says Brian Miller, senior vice president for the Salisbury branch of Citizens South Bank.
If a small business wants to borrow to finance growth or acquisitions in support of a successful business model, Miller said, then bankers will want to talk.
If, on the other hand, a business owner is interested in building a speculative office building as an investment or if cash is needed to fund operating losses, expect an uphill climb.
“Overall stability has returned to the banking industry and credit is absolutely available,” Miller said. “What’s changed are the types of loans and conditions that bankers can and will approve.”
Small businesses looking to invest in speculative real estate will find credit difficult to come by because of over-saturated markets that make these investments less attractive to bankers, Miller said.
There also is regulatory pressure for banks and other lending institutions to limit their additional real estate exposure.
“If a business needs capital for expansion or an acquisition, then bankers will generally be very interested in participating,” Miller said. “Because of the recession, there are numerous opportunities to purchase equipment and other hard assets at deep discounts.
“In assessing a small business credit risk, we look for evidence of profitable operations over a three-year period. A track record of success is essential. Also essential is that the business is interested in working with the bank on all of its banking needs and not just on a specific transaction.”
Small businesses that are experiencing losses and need additional cash to fund operations may also find credit difficult to access.
The exceptions are well-established bank customers with existing lines of credit, but even these are subject to careful oversight, according to Citizens South Bank.
“Borrowing to fund losses is only digging a deeper hole for a small business,” Miller said. “Owners who are in the red should look to other strategies such as cost reductions or changes in their business models. It is one thing to borrow for a short-term cash need, but another to attempt to fund ongoing losses.”
According to Miller, small business owners are well advised to review their overall banking relationships to determine if there are ways to enhance cash flow, reduce expenses and increase the return on deposits.
“Online banking, for example, can increase a small business’ efficiency; services such as remote deposit capture can enhance cash flow and lower expenses,” Miller said. “Remote deposit capture is an increasingly popular service that allows a business to deposit checks into their bank accounts from any secure Internet connected computer at any time.
“This means no staff time lost going to the bank. It’s just one example of how small businesses can take advantage of technology to improve operations.”