The Emancipation Economic Development Council (EEDC), a collaborative of organized and informed organizations committed to the revitalization of Houston’s Third Ward, with Project Row Houses announced today their receipt of a $460,000 gift from the Kinder Foundation. The money will fund the seven “early impact projects” in the area, creating tangible and positive near-term momentum:
· Young Mothers Employment Placement Pilot Program, connecting young Third Ward mothers to proximate and viable job opportunities as a pilot for a broader-based employment program for area residents;
· EEDC Community Wealth Building Symposium, bringing together local residents, anchor institutions, foundations, city, county, and state officials to foster partnerships that create long-term, sustainable employment for local residents and opportunities for local businesses;
· Emancipation Avenue Design Charrette and Projects, providing a venue for collaborative reimagination of the Emancipation Avenue commercial corridor;
· Community Development Corporation and Non-Profit Capacity Building, equipping Third Ward CDCs to develop affordable housing to meet community needs;
· Micro-Housing Feasibility Study and Prototype, conducting research into the financial feasibility of and community receptivity to small, affordable housing units leading to the construction of a prototype of this type of housing;
· Resident Housing Rights/Protection and Community Land Trust Awareness, fostering a dialogue about housing rights, community land trusts, permanent affordability, and the mechanisms for enabling long-term residents to remain in the community;
· Neighborhood Cleanup and Economic Opportunity Initiative, forming a neighborhood cleanup team staffed by residents of northern Third Ward timed to occur prior to the grand reopening of Emancipation Park in June 2017.
“When it seemed like the neighborhood was at a tipping point, our community saw an opportunity. We wanted to reimagine the development process to be inclusive of both Third Ward’s history and long-term residents,” said Eureka Gilkey, executive director of Project Row Houses. “We are grateful to the Kinder Foundation for recognizing and supporting this opportunity to equip Third Ward leaders and residents with the tools needed to build a revitalized community and preserve its historic legacy.”
Nancy Kinder, president of the Kinder Foundation said, “The Foundation is committed to long-term support of a ‘boots-on-the-ground’ approach to convening neighbors who are ready and willing to preserve and revitalize the Emancipation Park area. Our partnership spent much of 2016 making plans for positive change in the area, and these projects are the first evidence that our real goal is action that benefits our community partners.”
In 2016, the Kinder Foundation, Houston Endowment, and Project Row Houses together established the Emancipation Community Development Partnership (ECDP). The ECDP’s work supports EEDC’s by specifically focusing on making recommendations for adjustments to public policy at the local, state and possibly federal levels; public, private and non-profit investment strategies; community-based organizational work; and adoption of improved models for public services. Read more about the ECDP here.
About Emancipation Economic Development Council
Emancipation Economic Development Council is an organized, informed and engaged collaborative of
faith-based organizations, nonprofits, community development corporations, businesses, local government entities and other stakeholders with a mission to inspire hope and contribute to the revitalization and preservation of the historic Third Ward. For more information, visit emancipationhouston.org.