GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – Mill Village Ministries, a coalition of nonprofits, is working to break the cycle of poverty in Greenville.

Mill Village Ministries has been serving Greenville for almost ten years. They said their mission is to spark improvements across generations by bringing healthy food, bicycle access, youth employment, social justice, and entrepreneurial training to underserved areas.

“In so many ways, Greenville is on the top ten best list all the time. But Greenville also ranks as one of the toughest places to get out of poverty,” said Dan Weidenbenner, executive director of Mill Village Ministries. “It ranks, I think, in the top 27 counties in the country to get out of poverty.”

A groundbreaking ceremony was held this week as a building on Pendleton Street in West Greenville underwent renovations. Now, the nonprofit social enterprises will operate under one roof.

 It is a $4.5 million redevelopment project with 14,000 square feet of space. Those who work and volunteer with the organizations said they hope it will be a place for the community to feel welcome and will be a building to spark generational wealth.

“I am super excited about what I have seen,” said Courtney Singfield, program manager at Village Wrench. “Just the outreach from the community, it is amazing. The fact that people feel comfortable coming in here and asking us questions and the fact that we are able to help them utilize tools and resources.”

The organizations said they want the community to come and be empowered by what they are capable of accomplishing. They said that has been made possible over the years through hundreds of volunteers who come out and give back to the community.

“For us they are the ones with the gifts and the strengths that we get to unleash and empower,” Weidenbenner said. “It is a humbling feeling to see folks walk out of here with healthy food or a bike or a small business idea that is turning into reality.”

Mill Village Ministries said they hope for their new hub in Greenville to be fully renovated and operational before the end of 2024.