Last year, The Renaissance Collaborative experienced a tumultuous time of economic upheavals and budget dollars being cut from from public and private funding. However, TRC has been resilient in continuing its social impact by providing key services to individuals towards rebuilding their lives and ending homelessness. We have also collaborated with several partners to address issues that impact all of our communities in the greater Chicago area . Workforce development and job retention, homelessness, senior issues, and assuring the empowerment of local neighborhood voices on key concerns of community safety and growth. These are all key issues that we will be combating in 2017. Providing for those in need is a fundamental standard of the work and services that TRC provides. We have vowed to provide a space that, not matter what your circumstance is, you will to be treated with care and respect. None of this would be possible without the active engagement and support of our donors, supporters, partners, and funders. Our deepest thanks for your contributions, insights, and time spent in collaboration to protect our most vulnerable population, give respect to the forgotten, and to meet the basic need of an individual working towards a better life and sustainable self- sufficiency. We look forward to what the year of 2017 will bring.
Have a prosperous and blessed year.
Pat Abrams, Executive Director
Thank You For a Great Year!Thanks to these generous partners, board members, companies, and patrons who donated to the Renaissance Collaborative in 2016, many families and individuals in need were able to experience a joyful and safe holiday season. We truly appreciate your support and hope to have your continued support in 2017.
Both the Renaissance Apartments (101 units for former homeless) and TRC Senior Village 1, (71 units of independent senior housing) have continued to be key comprehensive support services provided by TRC. While no new program initiatives launched in 2016, TRC continued as a member of the SHARE Network for seniors. (A network initiated by University of Chicago Medical to improve research for the 80-100 year old citizens). In effort to support those effected by Alzheimer's disease, TRC has also introduced the idea of hosting "A Walk for Alzheimer's" in 2017.
Grandparent families support group celebrationResidents at SV1 in fitness center
BGOL Crew member in training
TRC Workforce Development and Job Retention:
Through our social impact and social enterprise programs, over 200individuals participated in one of our many social enterprise initiatives. Bronzeville Green (BG) Organic Landscaping, TRC Janitorial Training Program, and TRC Front Desk Attendant Program are just a few of the programs that we offer at here at the Renaissance Collaborative. BG continued to grow its customer base and its’ new line of business in snow removal while expanding its commercial cleaning business. These individuals were able to learn valuable transferable skills and knowledge on work force expectations to obtain positions successfully with the company.
Bronzeville Retail Initiative to leave TRC in 2017
Though much has come from our many years working with the Bronzeville Retail Intitiative (BRI), effective December 31, 2016, TRC will no longer be the fiscal agent and host partner of Bronzeville Retail Initiative. However, in an effort to provide some additional support to BRI, TRC focused its’ 2016 Annual February Friend-raiser Breakfast on small businesses and their importance in the community as an economic development tool. TRC welcomed Groupon as a co-sponsor for some of the “pop ups”; providing both support TRC and $7,500 of donations to BRI.
TRC hosted its first Affordable Comfort Seminar this month. The event was held at Senior Village 1 in the Bronzeville Community. The Affordable Comfort seminar provided insight on energy consumption and its impact on conservation. Elevate Energy equipped participants with tips on how to become energy efficient, how to identify scams and ways to save money on their utility bills. Elevate Energy provided 18 residents, as well as a member of TRC’s Grand-families Support Group, with free power strips to jump start their commitment to becoming more energy efficient. Over 25 community residents attended the “Affordable Comfort “ workshop. Due to its success, we have planned other workshops from
January – March 2017.
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/diversification-gentrifrication-friend-raiser-breakfast-tickets-31833585110 Friend Raiser Celebration Mark your calendars! (space is limited)In celebration of Black History Month, Join TRC and other leaders in our community in the commemoration of this honored tradition on March 3rd.
This year's Friend-raiser will include: Obama Foundation
Chicago Park District
We hope to broaden the discussion by inviting 3-4 organizations, whose ideas and proposals have long term consequences in the greater Bronzeville community. We would also, invite a panel of local leaders for a 30 minute roundtable discussion on possible implications, problems, solutions, and opportunities.
Did You Know... That our “Historical South Side YMCA” was the original establishment where the Black History Month (then "Negro Week") focus was founded and celebrated?
As we embark on Black History Month we would like to call to your attention the living space in which many historical people and leaders convened to develop ideas, share concerns, and debated issues – which shape and changed black life in America.
One such prominent moment was founded by Carter G. Woodson (one of the founders of the association for the study of African American life and history)