Cleveland Neighborhood Progress completed the fourth installment of its Neighborhood Solutions Award funding cycle in 2016. The Neighborhood Solutions Award is focused on a program or project that is ready to launch but in need of additional financial resources. This year, Cleveland community development corporations (CDCs) were instructed to focus on neighborhood placemaking and security.
A total of 29 proposals for the Neighborhood Solutions Award were submitted. The process was highly competitive and involved a thorough review of all proposals. Finalist organizations presented their proposed programs and projects to a panel of distinguished funders and local professionals. Panelists thoughtfully evaluated the finalist presentations using the criteria as stated in the Request for Proposals (RFP) that was issued in July 2016. Throughout the presentations, each CDC addressed how its neighborhood solution featured innovation, impact, collaboration, leadership and replicability.
The following programs or projects were chosen as the 2016 Neighborhood Solutions Award Grantees:
Resident-driven Neighboring Interventions (Detroit Shoreway CDO)
To reduce spot crime and increase resident familiarity, neighbors will bring chairs, coffee, and apples to various places in the Detroit Shoreway neighborhood and encourage neighbors to join them in friendly conversation. These stands will help build stronger connections amongst neighbors and improve safety by increasing activity and engagement.
Sweat Equity (Detroit Shoreway CDO)
A series of clean-up activities in the Detroit Shoreway area will be planned to improve overgrown alleyways and illegal dumping areas. Volunteerism will be motivated and institutionalized by modest gift cards.
Safety Town (Old Brooklyn Community Development)
A two-day safety town focused on younger and older youth will reach over 750 children in the Old Brooklyn school system, in partnership with Beachwood. The activities will range from the rules of the road for pedestrians and cyclists to how youth can partner with police officers to address drugs and violence.
Nights Out (Bellaire Puritas Development Corporation)
BPDC will work with neighborhood groups and block clubs to conduct safety-minded events designed to convene neighbors in local parks on four Summer evenings. These events will give neighbors the resources to promote interaction with people they would not ordinarily see, raise awareness about safety issues, and gain future participation in proactive community outings.
The Village Stage (Slavic Village Development)
Slavic Village Development and the Fleet Avenue Stakeholders will enhance vacant lots along of Fleet Avenue with a multi-functional mobile stage built by Slavic Village makers and artists. Three interactive events will bring the community and police together while embracing local talent, with the stage equipment enduring long past the scheduled programs.
Safe Secret (Burten Bell Carr Development AND Buckeye Shaker Square)
The Safe Secret project will facilitate an anonymous letter exchange between youth and police to create community dialogue around safety, race, and policing. A community conversation and curated exhibition displaying postcards from both children and police are both included in the plans.
Light Up the Ville (Famicos)
In a two-day event in the Glenville neighborhood, Famicos will create open spaces for dialogue amongst residents who may not know each other, have meaningful and hard conversations about neighborhood safety, police and community relations, and what residents can do to help.
Cooking with Cops (St. Clair Superior Development Corporation)
At Cooking with Cops events, community members and police officers will share a meal, an experience, and connect with one another. During the meal, participants will discuss strategies for vacant lot activation.
Peace and Unity Challenge Video (Harvard Community Services Center)
Two underused local parks will become venues for a musical skit involving the police and young residents that will be filmed and released on social media.
Our voice. Our story. Our song. (Buckeye Shaker Square Development Corporation)
Monthly literary workshops in local community businesses will encourage community togetherness by supporting the collective artistic development of community based storytellers, literary, and performing artists in the Buckeye and Mt. Pleasant neighborhoods.
Midtown-CSU Bridge Transformation (Midtown Cleveland AND Campus District)
The bridge over the inner belt on Euclid Avenue between E. 24th and E. 30th streets will be improved with overhead pedestrian and colorful energy-efficient LED lighting, as well as sidewalk branding and student art. This renovation will create a stronger connection between the two districts and enhanced security.
Safety and Engagement in Little Italy (University Circle AND Little Italy Redevelopment Corp)
Residents along E. 120th, Coltman, and E. 123rd will feel safer in their neighborhood with the improvement of public and private lighting, the installation of cameras, and engaging residents in regular block club meetings, building a stronger sense of community and trust.
The Ubuntu Gathering Place (East End Neighborhood House AND Buckeye Shaker Square)
A visually appealing and interactive gathering place and vital neighborhood corner previously known as the site of a blighted building. A kiosk will be included as an area of sharing and communication. The area will be encompassing the philosophy of Ubuntu—a focus on connectivity between people.
Morgana Run Trail Safety Improvements & Learning Lab (Slavic Village Development)
Funding will foster initial planning, lighting, and vegetative pruning for an area along the Morgana Run Trail where the Boys and Girls Club plans to install an Outdoor Learning Lab.
Liven Up Lorain (Detroit Shoreway CDO)
Specific infrastructure improvements will “Liven Up Lorain” from W. 73rd to W. 83rd. Additions will include tree pruning, pedestrian lighting, surveillance cameras, neighborhood branding, and public art.
Each of the winning CDCs will promptly receive these funds from Cleveland Neighborhood Progress in December 2016 and work will commence immediately. The CDCs will also receive technical assistance throughout the grant period from Neighborhood Progress staff. It is anticipated that each program or project will be active within 12 months.