PHILADELPHIA — The Mayor’s Office of Black Male Engagement (OBME) launched the Black Male Resource Finder, a virtual interactive tool that enables Philadelphia residents to access City and community resources more effectively through a digital platform. This new platform is OBME’s latest tool to bridge the opportunity divide for men and boys of color by striving to better the communities where they live and reduce the economic and social disparities that affect them.
According to the Brotherly Love Health Report, roughly 23 percent of Black men and boys live in poverty in Philadelphia. One of the reasons why this staggering statistic exists is because of the many gaps in services and opportunities. To ensure residents are aware of the many resources and services available, there has been a need for an interactive, user-friendly finder that will empower residents to find and enlist community programs in all zip codes of Philadelphia.
This finder houses the contact information of City agencies, Black-owned businesses, community organizations, programs, services, resources, and community stakeholders that provide support for Black males in Philadelphia. It also serves as a bridge to connect residents to workforce opportunities, legal services, health and wellness resources, fatherhood and parenting supports, community anti-violence groups, and much more.
“Our role is to provide and facilitate opportunities for our communities to engage with their local government and ensure that our engagement is measurable. In order to close the opportunity gap for Black men and boys, we must build the bridges to these resources and continue to ensure that our impact is far more than a one-time experience, ” said Eric Westbrook, Director, Mayor’s Office of Black Male Engagement.
The finder is divided into specific focus areas such as anti-violence programs, health and wellness, fatherhood and parenting support, and many more. Within each focus area, the organizations are in alphabetical order with their name, address, phone number, and website. We also included an interactive map that shows the specific location of each organization within the city.
Mynome Lorde, OBME’s Black Male Partnership VISTA Corps member, had the opportunity to research and connect with an array of organizations and resources that specifically help Black men and boys in the city. OBME and the Mayor’s Office of Innovation and Technology (OIT) partnered to create an interactive, user-friendly resource finder that can be accessed online.
“We want this digital tool to serve as an interactive resource for our community to discover and enroll in programs and services committed to helping Black males in the city,” added Lorde.
The Mayor’s Office of Black Male Engagement (OBME) works to close the opportunity divide for men and boys of color. Their work is inclusive, serving Latino, Asian, immigrant, and other populations of men and boys in Philadelphia.
OBME directs and supports the efforts of the Mayor’s Commission on African American Males, and coordinates My Brother’s Keeper Philadelphia, a program that aims to dismantle systems of inequality. OBME is part of the Office of Public Engagement.