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Southern Bancorp works toward its mission of rural revitalization through the use of several tools:
- Community revitalization– Strategic community planning is the foundation of Southern’s rural development process. The comprehensive planning process involves hundreds of residents in each community who are encouraged to dream big about their vision for their community. Southern then helps implement the plan and make that vision real.
- Asset building– Southern offers numerous services to individuals and families to help them save and manage their money, go to college, or start small businesses. Through services such as financial and homebuyer counseling, free income-tax preparation, innovative money management products, and through policy-driven efforts that serve low-income people across the region, Southern shows people how they can achieve financial stability and realize their dreams.
- Community banking– Southern’s community banks are the backbone of our services to rural towns. We provide crucial financial services like checking accounts, investment products, financial education services, and consumer loans that help our customers manage the present and plan for the future.
- Development lending– With hundreds of millions of dollars in development loans each year, Southern is helping schools, businesses, and community organizations make their communities more vibrant places to live.
- Property development– Southern works with local communities, other not-for-profit organizations, government agencies, health-care providers, private businesses, and neighbors to develop the schools, wellness centers, youth development centers, and other facilities that every town needs to thrive.
- Public Policy – Southern utilizes public policy change to support its rural development activities, thereby enabling a broader, more systemic impact on the revitalization of rural areas. Southern’s public policy activities apply the knowledge and experience of Southern’s range of companies to develop and advocate for local, state and federal public policy change that supports community revitalization, asset building, community banking, development lending and property development.