Indian Country in general experiences high levels of economic distress compared to the population as a whole, but Native people living in rural Native Nations face some of the most extreme economic conditions in the country. Nowhere is this more apparent than the 19 reservations located across Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming, some of the most rural states and reservations in the nation.
There are many current challenges that stand in the way of addressing the problem. However, two of the most noticeable are:
- Lack of local capacity to carry out large business and economic development projects, and
- (2) insufficient reasonably priced capital to support small businesses and economic growth.
As a result, we have seen a strong need for start-up project management services to help start and expand economic development projects that have already been determined viable but lack the needed capacity to launch and assist with the management of the enterprise or cannot obtain the appropriate level of financing for the project. Providing start-up project management services coupled with a reasonably-priced financing package will help local businesses and economic development organizations with the expertise and capital needed to successfully launch a new or expanded enterprise, growing the economic activity in the local community and creating new jobs and increased revenue generation.
By providing start-up project management expertise and funding to launch economic development initiatives and small business growth, AICS will create sustainable employment, support small business expansion, and increase revenues generated and retained. It will do this by growing the number of businesses-service organizations, which in turn creates jobs and provides increased local services for people, providing increased opportunity to spend and keep money within the community.
AICS is a social enterprise subsidiary of Native American Development Corporation.