Week 8 – Detroit Community-Engaged Research Program

Week 8

This project has increased my understanding of the issue surrounding small businesses and how the community they are in plays a large role in helping them break out into the commerce scene, especially women-owned and BIPOC-owned businesses which already have a larger barriers because of staggering inequalities that affect how much wealth is held by Americans that come from different racial groups. And especially the lack of support and funding surrounding these minority owned businesses is what creates a foundational problem for them.

I think the Downtown Detroit Partnership has a strong tie with the minority businesses in Detroit and even outside of Detroit because throughout my project as I learned more about the avenue they provide for businesses to grow even larger as well as the programs individuals in DDP lead to help these businesses have a better understanding of the economic scene because they are not as supported. The individuals in DDP that help to lead these programs also have their own experience of helping build their own small businesses as minorities and would like to help diversify the economic sector of Downtown Detroit.

It has given insight into the more corporate side of nonprofit work as this organization definitely functions a lot like a company but its goals do align with a non-profit as the funding projects and connections to the businesses exemplify the goals of DDP. Working on a gift shop as a form of funding and creating an analysis on DDP’s connection to its food trucks, vendors, and band/talent has helped me gain insight on the community and different groups that work together slowly but steadily to help create a thriving economic space in Detroit.

2 thoughts on “Week 8”

  1. Emily Castaneda-Espinoza

    Hi Siya, I think it’s great that the organization you’re working with has strong ties with minority businesses in Detroit! I’m glad that you seem to be learning a lot in your experiences there.

  2. Owen McAlister-Lopez

    Hey Siya! The DDP sounds quite interesting. Working specifically to promote minority-owned businesses is so relevant in a city like Detroit because much of the newer developments coming in downtown are white-owned and contribute to the gentrification crisis being experienced there. Detroit is largely a non-white city, so it’s important to set up economic development opportunities that support the demographic of the city. The corporate/non-profit hybrid structure of the DDP is also interesting. I know Maggie also experienced something similar to this, but it’s very different from where I worked. I’ll be interested to hear more about it at the showcase!

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