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Progress Dashboard

Where have we been?

Where have we been?

Where are we now?

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3

Phase 1 (2016)

We recruited stakeholders to analyze the problem, created a beginning set of system elements, and began considering a framework for a Detroit community development system.

Phase 2 (2017-2018)

We formed an Advisory Council, conducted extensive research resulting in a specific set of challenges and created Task Forces to respond to those challenges and develop test-projects for most of the elements.

Phase 3 (2019-2020)

Stakeholders will champion elements of the system, working closely with CDOs and GROs, by “test-piloting” project ideas:

  • Coordination of Capacity Building Services
  • Community Development Career Navigation Model
  • Neighborhood Vitality Success Framework
  • Neighborhood Voice and Advocacy Framework
  • At least two city-CDO funded partnerships

Simultaneously we will:

  • Activate the System Capitalization element
  • Establish a governance/oversight structure
  • Develop a process to resolve CDO coverage for all neighborhoods
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Detroit Hispanic Development Corporation


When was it organized?

1997

Who is completing this survey? Name and role with organization:

Founder and Executive Director, Angela Reyes

Choose one category that best fits your organization:

Community Development Organization (not sponsored by a church or agency or company)

Does your organization have paid staff?

  • Yes, 30.  27 FTE; 3 PTE.

What is the annual budget of your organization?

2.4 Million

Describe the streets or locations that define your organization’s overall focus area (north, south, east and/or west):

  • N — West Warren
  • S — River
  • W — City Limits
  • E — 6th Street

Describe in detail the work your organization does, within the role categories below, along with the specific geographic area in which the work is done. Refer to the definitions below of the community development roles we are inquiring about. Include any partner organizations you work with, and how the work is funded or otherwise resourced. Use extra pages if necessary. If your organization doesn’t do work in one or more of the role categories, just skip that portion of the survey.

Please describe the work your organization does in community development:

Convening/Facilitating/Collaborations: General Description

  • We work a lot on education reform and meet with principals and parents to bring them together with the Michigan Civil Rights Department regarding filing complaints around lack of language access and other efforts.
  • We worked with several of the businesses around the issues of parking meters in the neighborhoods so that we meet the needs of businesses and residents.
  • We are a member of the Community Benefits Community Advisory Group for the development of the Gordie Howe Bridge and Ford Motor Company.
  • We work with local businesses and universities to develop career pipelines for youth, especially around STEAM fields.
  • We hold meetings at DHDC.
  • When Detroit Future City was developing their initial plan, we held community forums for Southwest Detroit residents to provide input.
  • We’ve held candidate forums.

We have to make an opportunity to increase accessibility through child care, food and translation in order for community members to attend and participate in activities.

  • We’ve held community forums around environmental justice, education and immigration.
  • We’ve had between 10–500 people at any given meeting.
  • We have an annual partner breakfast with all of our business, community and education partners.
  • We’ve had dances.
  • People use our space for wakes, quinceñeras, baby showers, holiday parties, celebrations and the winter solstice.
  • We get a lot of international groups that come in for youth violence prevention and technology training.
  • We do community trainings with AGI Construction.
  • We also hold educational sessions around purchasing homes, financial literacy and tax foreclosure prevention.

Convening/Facilitating/Collaborations: Partner Organizations

  • CDAD
  • Detroit Future City
  • Michigan Civil Rights Department
  • Michigan Voice
  • Congress of Communities
  • AGI Construction
  • University of Michigan
  • Residents
  • Businesses
  • Young Professionals
  • Hispanic Society of Engineers
  • Michigan School Finance Reform Collaborative
  • Others

Convening/Facilitating/Collaborations: Funders

  • Kellogg Foundation
  • Ford Foundation
  • Michigan Voices

Convening/Facilitating/Collaborations: Important Outcomes or Lessons

Outcomes:

  • We educate the community around policy and we train them around policy advocacy.
  • We’ve impacted policies around a lot of issues e.g. voter turnout, GOTD, improving education, family separation issues, immigration/trauma related to immigration, and helping people who’ve been expelled and excluded in school.
  • We make sure there’s a voice for the Latino community and we have translation equipment for people such as community partners and City Council members to use.

Lessons:

  • The more we do, the more people want to do here. We’ve had to take a break in the summer and there’s a huge need to have space.
  • We have to make an opportunity to increase accessibility through child care, food and translation in order for community members to attend and participate in activities.
  • We have to do a lot of face to face outreach because people don’t have access to social media and don’t respond to flyers.  We’re pretty effective at doing this because our staff live in the community that we serve.

Resident Engagement/Empowerment: General Description

  • We have a social media presence.
  • We do face to face recruitment.
  • We do trainings for youth and adults for leadership development. They set the agenda and run the meetings. A lot of our staff have gone through these trainings and stepped into leadership roles. Self‐determination is emphasized.  We’re not the saviors; we’re just the ones to facilitate the process of people becoming self‐determined.

When you train people to be vocal about how they feel and think, they’re going to disagree with you and you can’t be afraid of that. Some organizations don’t want people challenging them.

  • There aren’t a lot of block clubs in Southwest Detroit, but we work with parent groups, church groups and other grassroots organizations (GROs).
  • We provide small grants for capacity building (resident engagement and organizing) for GROs.

Resident Engagement/Empowerment: Partner Organizations

  • 482Forward
  • Coalition for the Future of Detroit School Children
  • Detroit Urban Research Center
  • Congress of Communities
  • Urban Neighborhood Initiatives
  • Detroit Peoples’ Platform
  • ROC Detroit
  • Mothering Justice
  • Michigan Education Justice Coalition
  • CDAD
  • FORCE
  • MOSES
  • Michigan Economic Justice Coalition
  • Faith in Action

Resident Engagement/Empowerment: Funders

  • Kellogg Foundation
  • Ford Foundation
  • McGregor Fund
  • Obama Foundation
  • Erb Foundation

Resident Engagement/Empowerment: Important Outcomes or Lessons

Outcomes:

  • We’re a small community and, if we don’t partner with other groups, then we won’t make an impact on policy. A lot of people from our resident engagement have taken on leadership roles and understand that they can make change in their schools i.e. getting schools to improve rat infestation, to improve lunches, to get more bilingual services and staff in the schools and to understand who’s running for office and issues related to youth being elected to student councils. In the past, student council members were elected by principals.
  • We’ve had a low voter turnout and we’ve been trying to increase that through resident engagement. We emphasize the importance of voter turnout, voting during the primaries and voting on the ballot initiatives — not just people running for office.

Lessons:

  • It helps to partner with people.
  • It’s easier to access people in power than people realize. People are surprised when a Congressperson shows up at a policy advocacy training. Congress people pay attention to resident voices. If you don’t have money, then you have to have a voice.
  • When you train people to be vocal about how they feel and think, they’re going to disagree with you and you can’t be afraid of that. Some organizations don’t want people challenging them.
  • We provide services and do resident engagement to make us stronger. If we’re only working on the ground level then nothing will change; but, if we’re only doing the policy work then we’re not meeting people’s needs.  We do both.

Economic Development: General Description

  • We own this building.
  • Several of our young people are graffiti artists and muralists who have painted the outside of the building. We’re on the Detroit street art tour.
  • Kids do work in the area parks.
  • Kids help to design carbon buffers to deal with air quality issues.
  • We’re exploring purchasing a building behind us for early child care.
  • We help people buy houses from the land bank because many of the people from our community are not eligible for mortgages (especially if they’re undocumented). We help them through the whole process.

It’s not easy to explain to people the unique conditions in the Latino community and their needs so it’s harder to get funding for the group.  Latinos don’t fit into that particular niche. This is one of the areas where we have the least voice from the Latino community at the table. Trying to get a foot in and a voice at the table has not been easy.

  • We help with financial literacy.
  • We helped negotiate the benefits with the Gordie Howe Bridge.
  • We have a grant to do a health impact assessment on the air quality and health from all the additional trucks. We’re training people to be surveyors to do baseline data for the health of and impact on residents.

Economic Development: Partner Organizations

  • University of Michigan
  • SW Detroit Environmental Vision
  • Ideal Group
  • Detroit Land Bank Authority
  • Bridging Communities
  • SW Detroit Community Benefits Coalition
  • Marshall Plan employers

Economic Development: Funders

  • City of Detroit — Health Department
  • HUD
  • Huntington Bank
  • Bank of America
  • Kresge Foundation
  • Michigan Department of Education

Economic Development: Important Outcomes or Lessons

Outcomes:

  • Collectively, we’ve won 40 million dollars in community benefits for the community which was historical.
  • More people in our population are able to purchase homes; their needs are different from other people. We’re trying to improve air quality and increasing access to healthy food.

Lessons:

  • It’s not easy to explain to people the unique conditions in the Latino community and their needs so it’s harder to get funding for the group.  Latinos don’t fit into that particular niche. This is one of the areas where we have the least voice from the Latino community at the table. Trying to get a foot in and a voice at the table has not been easy.
  • When you’re persistent with something (the bridge took 15 years), you can have amazing outcomes that you might think you’d never be able to get.

Resident Support: General Description

  • Our work is organized in three buckets: community organizing, youth and family support.
  • We have housing counseling, financial literacy, ESL, vocational ESL, job placement, training in entrepreneurship and OSHA training.
  • We have a free/very cheap tattoo removal program to help people get jobs.
  • We have immigration services that help people develop emergency response plans in case some one’s deported.
  • We connect families to mental health services: many people are dealing with PTSD.
  • For the youth, we have trauma informed life skills as well as educational support.
  • We have STEAM activities. We have a robotics build site and professional mentors.
  • We work with disconnected youth (14–24) and help them get reconnected as well as providing other wrap‐around services.

Resident Support: Partner Organizations

  • American Indian Health and Family Services
  • SW Solutions
  • DLIVE
  • NSO
  • Health Department
  • GM
  • Ford
  • Chrysler
  • DTE
  • Best Buy
  • Comcast
  • All of the area schools are partners (15 different schools)
  • First Robotics (provides resources and curriculum for the kids)
  • TACOM (provide a science teacher for the middle school kids because they’re not getting the skills they need to get to college)

Resident Support: Funders

  • Erb Foundation
  • Skillman
  • Kellogg
  • Kresge
  • McGregor
  • Comcast
  • Best Buy
  • GM
  • Ralph Wilson Foundation

Resident Support: Important Outcomes or Lessons

Outcomes:

  • We have high school kids who stay in our program for at least two years. Ninety percent of them graduate and go into college or secondary education (army or training).
  • It takes two years for people who are disconnected (that are consistently involved with our program) to change the trajectory in their life.
  • There’s a 5% recidivism rate with the people we work with coming home from prison.
  • We have a lot of kids going off to college and also getting hired as interns by the companies that they work with in STEAM.  Companies are starting to fight over the kids.
  • Removing tattoos is cathartic for people.  Removing symbols and images from people’s bodies and faces has a huge impact on their lives.
  • Because we have the community’s trust and we’ve been doing this so long, we rarely recruit for our programs.  It’s mostly word of mouth and we always end up serving more than we’ve put in the grant.

Lessons:

  • We try to work with the whole family whenever possible to help them be stabilized. If you’re only working with the kids and the parents are still struggling, it won’t help the kid as much as working with the whole family.
  • Having bilingual and culturally competent staff makes a huge difference in the community and helps with people’s levels of trust.
  • It’s important to listen to the the community even if you’re from the community. Sometimes you assume what people need, but you need to be conscious about asking and getting feedback to stay relevant.
  • You have to pay attention to quality improvement constantly.
  • We make sure that the youth and the families have a say in how the programs are designed. They’re also involved in the evaluation of the programs.
  • I have a lot of young people on staff. We also have baby boomers. The cross‐generational synergy keeps us on the cutting edge of working with the community and keeps us relevant and creative.

Community Planning and Advocacy: General Description

Community Planning:

  • We’ll be working on future planning for Delray and Corktown.
  • With Ford Motor Company coming in, we’ve participated in several of the planning efforts with Empowerment Zones, etc. We make sure that residents have a voice and a seat at the table.
  • For education, we have a lot of parents and youth participating in the Coalition for the Future of Detroit School Children to make sure they have a voice and are actively involved in creating that kind of change.

Advocacy:

It’s hard for the planning part. Some people who say they’re including the community voice really aren’t. They have meetings when people aren’t available; a lot of times the people who are showing up are being paid to be there. The true resident engagement and planning has a long way to go, but is so important.

  • We work a lot on education reform and meet with principals and parents to bring them together with the Michigan Civil Rights Department on filing complaints around lack of language access and other efforts.
  • We were a part of the Community Benefits Community Advisory Group for the development of the Gordie Howe Bridge and Ford Motor Company. 

Community Planning and Advocacy: Partner Organizations

  • Ford Motor Company
  • Coalition for the Future of Detroit School Children
  • Area Schools
  • Michigan Civil Rights Department
  • Michigan Voice
  • Congress of Communities

Community Planning and Advocacy: Funders

  • Kellogg
  • Ford
  • Erb

We don’t have funding for planning.

Community Planning and Advocacy: Important Outcomes or Lessons

Outcomes:

  • In being able to have community benefits that address the community needs to reduce the negative impacts of any development that might be affecting the community, we’re looking at what gentrification looks like in Southwest Detroit. It’s a real issue that’s happening rapidly.  How do we get businesses and other people moving in to be respectful and responsive of the community?
  • We educate the community around policy and we train them around policy advocacy.
  • We’ve impacted policies around a lot of issues e.g. voter turnout, GOTD, improving education, family separation issues, immigration/trauma related to immigration, and helping people who’ve been expelled and excluded in school.
  • We make sure there’s a voice for the Latino community and we have translation equipment for people such as City Council members to use.

Lessons:

  • It’s hard for the planning part. Some people who say they’re including the community voice really aren’t. They have meetings when people aren’t available; a lot of times the people who are showing up are being paid to be there. The true resident engagement and planning has a long way to go, but is so important.

Finally, please rank each role 1 to 5, with 5 being the most frequent role, and 1 being the least frequent role carried out by the organization.

Convening/Facilitating/Collaborations: Frequency Rank

4

Resident Engagement/Empowerment: Frequency Rank

4

Economic Development: Frequency Rank

3

Resident Support: Frequency Rank

5

Community Planning and Advocacy: Frequency Rank

2


Can you please point us to other organizations in Detroit — especially in your immediate neighborhood — that are doing community development work? (Organization name, contact name, email, phone)

Ninfa Cancel (District Manager)

This information is current as of 7/19/2018


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