The Blue Triangle Multi-cultural Association’s (BTMCA) commercial kitchen is getting a makeover as a result of the donations collected during Black Restaurant Week’s showcase.

Known as the first branch of Houston’s Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA), it was founded in 1919 during World War I and became a meeting place where women and girls of color could meet, learn and enjoy recreational activities. It opened at 806 Clay Ave. in the old Masonic Building, and now resides on 3005 McGowen St.

Since its opening, the center has had a long history of providing programs and activities for children and adults like daycare, Bible study, art, drama and dance classes for the third ward community.

Charlotte Kelly Bryant, BTMCA’s volunteering board president, said educational and social activities made Blue Triangle “the social spot” for many Houstonians, yet, “the building is old and needs a lot of remodeling.”

Bryant said to maintain the buildings sustainability in the community, BTMCA has rented out their commercial kitchen for recreational use to earn revenue.

“Though I’m currently renting out the kitchen, I’m realizing it needs a number of things, including a three-door refrigerator, deep freezer, and installation of additional electrical outlets.”

Falayn Ferrell, Black Restaurant Week’s operations manager, says donations from the showcase will not only help supply BTMCA with its needs, it will help provide a better rental space for small catering businesses.

“The new kitchen renovation will allow churches, families, and executive chefs the ability to rent out the kitchen to prepare large meals for events such as special luncheons, weddings, funerals, and family reunions,” said Ferrell.

“It’ll also help BTMCA’s signature holiday event, Breakfast with Santa that gives gifts and breakfast to lower income children during the holiday season.”

Bryant said though she is grateful for this opportunity to help BTMCA thrive, she said the new kitchen renovation is just one of many issues that still needs work.

“Next on the agenda is getting our roof repaired for $200,000. However, just like God blessed BTMCA with the help from Black Restaurant Week, I know that he can do it again,” she said.

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