West End Community Foundation: West End Strong

The West End Community Foundation, Inc. in collaboration with the Lyon Park and West End Neighborhoods conducted several community-based activities and projects to strengthen the relationship of its community members and the community center (Community Family Life and Recreation Center at Lyon Park), provided educational and social opportunities for youth and adults, and recognized and preserved the rich history of the Lyon Park School and Neighborhood.

Together they:

  • Hosted five free African dance classes in which 100 people participated total
  • Co-hosted three recreation and social events with 130 people participating and over 100 free meals served
  • Co-hosted one historical education event with Village of Wisdom in which 50 people participated
  • Photographed 38 elders from West End in partnership with photographer, Jamaica Gilmer
  • Installed a new bench in front of community center to honor community leaders and purchased a display case for the original Lyon Park School bell

Jamaica Gilmer, photographer for the Elders of the West End Portrait Series and three elders who are longtime friends and who attended the Lyon Park School together

In addition to these tangible impacts, the project also made a difference as activities encouraged a healthy lifestyle, fostered a sense of connectedness during the pandemic especially for those who felt isolated, and was intentional about supporting Black-led businesses and organizations through partnerships and contracts.

This project was funded during FY 2021.