I am a mom. Every day I sit on the same street corner in Englewood. I do it to make sure that the neighborhood kids get not only a hot meal, but a childhood—one complete with running, jumping, and playing. One without any concern of getting shot. I sit with other moms, dads, and just about anyone who cares about our city and our children. People come from far and wide to sit on that corner with us and together we have become the village that it takes to raise our children.
I’ve noticed that when we talk about the village, we never talk about where the villagers work, buy their groceries, save their money, or who builds their huts. It feels as if we’ve always had a strained relationship with the business community, but I’m convinced that it can be fixed and that business has a positive and vital role to play in our village. Unemployment remains our biggest challenge and businesses can help buy providing our youth job training, mentorships and increased employment opportunities. Give someone a reason to get up in the morning, a steady income and a place to be and you will see the positive impact almost immediately. I know this because it’s already happening on a small scale.