FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Dec. 18, 2020
Contact: Curtis Eaddy II, Marketing Director
Michael Seipp, Executive Director
Southwest Partnership, Inc
BUILDING BRIDGES AND CONNECTING PARTNERS TO INVEST IN THE PEOPLE AND NEIGHBORHOODS OF THE SOUTHWEST PARTNERSHIP
— Project will improve neighbors’ economic mobility by making critical home repairs and increasing access to skilled trades education and jobs —
— Multi-year project, facilitated by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, includes collaboration with Southwest Partnership Inc (SWP), Rebuilding Together, City of Baltimore, and The University of Maryland, Baltimore —
At the Southwest Partnership (SWP), we work diligently to connect our neighborhoods with the right partners who share common interests and have the resources to create change and make an impact. We are thankful to Lowe’s Companies Inc. for their three-year-long investment in the SWP neighborhoods and people, which represents more than $2 million that will contribute to critical home repairs for 45 homeowners, an increase in workforce development efforts, and improving local recreation centers, parks, and green areas. Our partnership stands on three pillars – Revitalized Homes, Restorative Parks and Recreation Centers, and Workforce Development.
“The rebirth of our city depends on everybody working together, and I welcome the commitment and partnership with Lowe’s to help improve the quality of life for the residents of the neighborhoods of SWP,” said Mayor Brandon M. Scott. “When we are able to strengthen one neighborhood, all of Baltimore becomes a better place. Lowe’s leadership understands that all aspects of a community must be addressed, and SWP’s Vision Plan calls for this to happen. The partnership of residents, anchor institutions, businesses, and government to raise the quality of life is a model that works. Thank you, Lowe’s, for believing in Baltimore. I look forward to being an active member of this new partnership.”
In year one Lowe’s Companies Inc. will be working closely with the SWP, Southwest Sports and Fitness Alliance, Baltimore City Department of Recreation and Parks, Poppleton Now!, The Church of the Nativity, the United Way, the Excel Academy at Francis M. Wood High School and other stakeholders. The project, utilizing private and community investments, will include the revitalization of the Poppleton Rec Center and surrounding green space and building the new United Way Poppleton Family Center at the Excel Academy space.
In addition to this capital project, Lowe’s is investing in the people by offering a $300K annual grant over three years to increase job retention and wages for program participants and to increase the capacity and success of Southwest Works, SWP’s workforce development program. Our Southwest Works program directly targets families within the seven neighborhoods of the Southwest Partnership, providing thousands of employment opportunities and engaging with hundreds of residents each year.
“Baltimore is at a critical crossroad and all of us have an important role to play. The work Southwest Partnership and Lowes Corporation are able to do together in improving the quality of life for the Southwest corridor is having a lasting, positive impact on our city. I believe our partnership can be a model for other companies and community service organizations throughout Baltimore,” says Richard Parker, the President of Southwest Partnership, Inc.
We are excited to announce our three grantees for year one: Safe Alternative Foundation for Education (S.A.F.E.) $50K, for the construction of a new workforce development community center; 10:12 Sports $34,500 to increase workforce development support for graduates of their sports mentoring program, and the University of Maryland Medical Center $57,600 to offer free training for area residents in high-demand healthcare careers. We are working with these organizations to ensure the implementation of a vertically integrated workforce development model and the success of our program graduates as we continue to provide job readiness services like resume writing, career navigation, and effective job searching and interviewing.
Lowe’s belief in the Southwest Partnership Vision is generating stability and security for our current residents. Elderly residents who are aging in place, families with kids, and adults with disabilities are all eligible for home repairs and revitalization projects up to a value of $10,000. Through a partnership with Rebuilding Together Baltimore, skilled professionals will ensure that homes are safe, warm, and dry and improve health and safety through needed fixes such as roof repairs and improved heating and ventilation systems, installing railings and hand bars, removing lead paint, and more.
“Lowe’s is uniquely suited to make a difference by addressing two things we know well – creating safe, affordable housing and supporting skilled trades – in our Baltimore neighborhoods,” said Quonta Vance, Lowe’s division president, north division. “This collaboration is a model of how we can help make meaningful, lasting change through the development of a targeted workforce development grant program that aims to improve employee retention and career growth, create safer homes and restore community parks and green areas.”
This partnership with Lowe’s provides the SWP with the resources and support we need to tackle the many challenges faced by community members in our once-redlined neighborhoods: family economic stability, safe and secure housing, access to green space and recreation opportunities, and the ongoing impact of disinvestment and blight. We are so thankful to Lowe’s Companies Inc. for their investment in our homes, parks, community spaces, people, and community.
About the Southwest Partnership, Inc.:
The vision of the Southwest Partnership is to build an awesome, healthy, architecturally beautiful, diverse, cohesive community of choice built on mutual respect and shared responsibility. We embrace all diversity from race, gender, and sexual orientation to economic, educational, and housing choices. Our diversity is our strength.
For more information about Southwest Partnership news and updates www.swpbal.org/news