Highlighting Black-owned businesses and community organizations

For this Black History Month, we’d like to shine some light on the Black-owned businesses and community organizations that have a positive impact on historically disadvantaged populations in the Philadelphia region. These organizations often work to address issues of equity, access to housing, and community empowerment. Here are a few notable ones:

1.    Urban Creators: Urban Creators is a Black-led organization in Philadelphia that focuses on community development through urban agriculture, sustainable design, and youth empowerment. While their primary focus is on urban farming and community gardens, they also incorporate elements of design and architecture into their projects.

2.    The Enterprise Center: The Enterprise Center is a Black-led community development corporation in West Philadelphia that provides support for minority-owned businesses and entrepreneurs. While their focus is broader than design and architecture, they offer programs and resources that support economic development and neighborhood revitalization efforts which often include design and placemaking components.

3.    Philadelphia Association of Community Development Corporations (PACDC): PACDC is a membership organization that represents community development corporations (CDCs) in Philadelphia, many of which are led by Black individuals and serve predominantly Black communities. While PACDC’s primary focus is on affordable housing, economic development, and community organizing, they also engage in efforts related to neighborhood planning and design.

4.    Black Women in Architecture (BWA): Black Women in Architecture is a national network that provides support and resources for Black women in the architecture profession. They may have local chapters or affiliates in Philadelphia that offer networking opportunities, professional development, and mentorship for black women working in design and architecture.

5.    Community Design Collaborative: The Community Design Collaborative is a Philadelphia-based nonprofit that provides pro bono design services to nonprofit organizations and communities in need. They engage with diverse communities across the city and work to address issues of equity and social justice through design. While not specifically focused on black communities, they may collaborate with Black-led organizations on community-driven design projects.

These organizations are actively involved in community development and related fields, often incorporating design principles into their work. Supporting and collaborating with these organizations can help promote equity and empowerment in Philadelphia’s Black communities.

All photos are property of these organizations.

Highlighting Black-owned businesses and community organizations
Urban Creators
The Enterprise Center
Philadelphia Association of Community Development Corporations (PACDC)
Black Women in Architecture (BWA)
Community Design Collaborative