#TheRealIvyCity, is a youth-led program to call attention to the real needs of Ivy City residents amid the recent gentrification boom in the community. Six Ivy City residents between the ages 19-23 are working with Empower DC for a 6 month project which will include:
Assisting in the development and implementation of a program engaging Ivy City residents.
Participating in a training program to learn organizing principles, civics, public narrative, and using quantitative and qualitative data.
Engaging other Ivy City residents in surveys and other community-building activities. See the results here.
Contributing to the development of a sustainable community project within Ivy City.
# TheRealIvyCity testifying at the DC City Council
I never thought dorky me would be featured on a rap track! At work, Parisa Bonita Norouzi challenged #TheRealIvyCity to apply their knowledge of data and DC civics to hip-hop. Here’s what they came up with Bomani Armah.
Empower DC believes that community organizing is the most effective way to uplift low-income communities in the District of Columbia. Community organizing builds the power of people directly impacted by an issue – such as the demolition of public housing or the closure of a school – to create positive, long-lasting change for their communities, their families, and themselves.
Empower DC organizes with low- and moderate-income residents of DC. We are most engaged with Black communities living in Wards 5, 6, 7, and 8. These communities are often neglected by the city’s leadership, or targeted for change that will not benefit current residents.
Our current community organizing campaigns are to save and improve public housing, to ensure all children have access to high quality neighborhood public schools, and to support the residents of Ivy City as they improve their neighborhood.
For a great introduction to community organizing, watch veteran organizer Roger Newell lead one of Empower DC’s most popular Empowerment Circles, Community Organizing 101.
Empower DC’s community organizing is guided by these principles:
Work with groups of people who share a common problem
Develop leadership through training and providing leadership opportunities
Develop the self-confidence of leaders and potential leaders
Support groups to develop action plans and implement them
Use the media to inform the larger community about issues and to gain support
Use confrontation when necessary to force a recalcitrant target to negotiate or resolve an issue
Leaders, rather than staff, set the agenda for the organization and carry it out
Empower DC hosts a one-hour radio show on WPFW 89.3, Taking Action, every Tuesday at 1:00 pm to talk about critical issues facing DC’s low-income communities of color. We bring in DC residents — the real experts — to talk about the challenges our communities face and solutions designed to uplift our people. If you have a suggestion for a show, a question, or a comment, email email@example.com. Check out our latest show below. Click here to Listen Live!