City Council Member Hanifa Shabazz Welcomes Entrepreneurs to a Third Meeting for Training, Experience and Success

Posted on  04/29/2014 11:52 am

The May 6 Event is Another Step in Creating an Eastside RISING Empowerment Center That Will Produce Successful Businesses and Create Jobs

Wilmington City Council Member Hanifa Shabazz (D-4th District) has announced that the date for the third of three scheduled public meetings to bring together business owners and those who aspire to own a business will be held on Tuesday, May 6. This gathering is part of a larger goal of the Eastside Rising Strategic Plan, which in part, calls for the creation of economic development opportunities that support current business owners and encourages others to start a business.

The Central Baptist Community Development Corporation is the driving force and planner of this component of the Eastside Rising effort that is creating an Eastside Economic Empowerment Center that will train and support entrepreneurs who in turn will provide businesses and jobs to help the Eastside and the City of Wilmington to continue to prosper.

The third community meeting for entrepreneurs will be held on Tuesday, May 6, beginning at 6:30 p.m. at Central Baptist Church located at 9th and Pine Streets.

Twenty seven entrepreneurs attended two previous meetings held at Central Baptist Church. They learned how their efforts, interests and skills will help not only themselves to become successful business owners, but strengthen their own neighborhoods and communities.

“It is obvious after meeting with the scores of people who stepped forward previously that our excitement about the talent and skills that are evident throughout the Eastside was well-founded,” said Council Member Shabazz. “We’ve got to nurture and develop these citizens so they become a force for the greater good in their own community.”

The Eastside Rising business and job strategy, as well as the move toward the creation of an Economic Empowerment Center, are collaborative efforts on the part of District Council Member Shabazz, the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development, Central Baptist Community Development Corporation, Eastside Blueprint Community, Delaware State University and several research and service centers at the University of Delaware.

This partnership is a continuation of efforts begun in November of 2013, when ten organizations came together through the efforts of the Central Baptist Community Development Corporation and the Eastside Blueprint Community on Pine Street in Eastside Wilmington to sign an historic Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) creating an Eastside Housing Collaborative. The goal is to build community and restore prosperity to an area of the Eastside bounded by 4th Street to 11th Street and Church Street to Walnut Street.

“Our Eastside Rising economic empowerment model changes the dynamics for economic development,” said Reverend Terrence Keeling, President of the Central Baptist Community Development Corporation. “We’re not waiting for jobs to come to us; we’re focused on creating the jobs. It is our goal to grow and attract a minimum of twenty small businesses with the intent that they will employ over 50 eastside residents.”

Those interested in attending the May 6 entrepreneurial gathering are asked to pre-register by calling Councilwoman Hanifa Shabazz at (302) 576-2140 or emailing her at