Community Ventures (CV) has, over the years, built a network of individuals (bank loan officers, economic development persons, county Judge Executives) in the 20 counties served by the USDA Delta IRP. Those folks have their ear to the ground as far as potential projects in their respective areas, and CV works with them to bring those projects to life. Since 2016, CV has worked with Delta IRP to re-lend $997,775—just shy of $1 million—to new and expanding businesses within the Delta area of Western Kentucky. Our combined efforts and USDA funding have now helped a total of 10 businesses launch or grow, creating and retaining much-needed jobs. Thanks to the funding and support these businesses received, they have created a combined 31 jobs and retained 18 jobs across 9 of the 20 counties served by the IRP Delta program in rural parts of Western Kentucky.
Joy and James Goben opened Goben Family Care in Sebree, a small (one stoplight) rural town in Webster County, Kentucky on June 1st, 2022. Joy, who grew up just 40 minutes away in Sturgis, is a Nurse Practitioner who dreamed of being able to offer medical care to an underserved population in an area where little else is available—the closest hospital being 30 minutes away. In addition to quality health care, she also wanted to offer greatly reduced pricing for those who are either un- or under-insured.
“Initially when COVID hit, I wanted to get out of healthcare and open a crematorium,” Goben recalls. “I went to bed one night and prayed and prayed about what I should do. I woke up the next morning and told my husband that plans had changed. I had to open an office to help people. But we needed money to get us up and running. We needed a loan to purchase equipment, inventory and office supplies.”
Working initially through the Small Business Development Center, her contact there put Goben in touch with Community Ventures after other sources of funding fell through. The IRP Delta program, overseen by CV’s Ron Burkins, Vice President of Lending in the company’s Owensboro, KY office has relied on both the funding support of the USDA, as well as a healthy network of local individuals, from bank loan officers and economic development persons to county Judge Executives and other elected officials. Together, this partnership has yielded a pipeline of entrepreneurs and small business owners, all from rural settings and, all previously underbanked or non-banked. The IRP Delta program has allowed Community Ventures to provide support, technical assistance, and funding to allow them to grow and provide much-needed services in their community.
“It was obvious from my first meeting with her that Joy Goben has a heart for the underserved,” said Burkins. “In fact, her mission is akin to that of Community Ventures, hers being medical and ours financial. The area where Goben Family Care is located has a large underserved Hispanic population. Joy’s business will offer a plethora of services to that area and beyond, and with years of medical and management experience between the wife and husband team, Goben Family Care is poised to serve many people.”
“Ron is such a great person, and he has worked so hard to get this loan for us,” Mrs. Goben said. “We are primary care, we can see all ages and offer so many services. Business is good and we are growing steadily.” Goben Family Care currently employs a staff of six in addition to Joy.