Black-Run Nonprofits: Pillars of Community Empowerment
When our communities sound calls for justice, public safety, support and education, Black-run nonprofit organizations answer loudly and clearly in cities throughout the country.
Here are just two of the Black-led organizations we’ve had the pleasure of working with that are doing great work.
Southwest Detroit Community Justice Center
Consider how a culture of incarceration and recidivism has impacted a Detroit neighborhood, where young men without legal representation get stuck in a “revolving door” of injustice, returned to jail for nuisance or subsistence crimes when on probation or parole.
That’s where LaNeice Jones and her team at Southwest Detroit Community Justice Center (SWDCJC) can help. The organization operates the only Community Court program in Michigan, a jail diversion program that provides a restorative justice opportunity for people who have committed low-level, non-violent misdemeanor offenses.
The Center serves as a bridge between law enforcement and the community, helping balance personal accountability with justice and social welfare for its clients. One client, according to Jones, had just been released from jail and was promptly re-arrested for breaking into an abandoned house: he had no place to live upon release. The Center helped him make a restitution agreement and connected him with housing resources, and the client did not need to return to jail.
JLJ Vision Outreach
The streets of inner-city Toledo, Ohio can set young people on the wrong path, but Keith Jordan understood how just a little support could go a long way toward empowering Black youth. Tempted by the street life, Jordan stayed away from drugs and gangs to have a successful career at the Ford Motor Company. Along the way, he volunteered his time and expertise to helping youth from desperate backgrounds avoid the same temptations.
As co-founder of JLJ Vision Outreach, an educational enrichment program, Jordan and his team teach self-discipline, life skills and academic skills to high school-age youth in Toledo. Today, Jordan and his 14 employees are helping ensure the young people of Toledo’s inner-city communities can find academic success, stability and personal growth during a difficult and disruptive time.
We are grateful to be working with such incredibly transformative organizations that are making a big impact on the communities they serve.