Our Food Distribution Center is now closed. We reopen on Monday morning at 9:30am.

Updates from Sabathani: CEO Redd’s Summer 2023 Message

Updates from Sabathani: CEO Redd’s Summer 2023 Message

Summer is in full swing at Sabathani, and we are thrilled to share our latest developments here within our organization. From ongoing services to upcoming events and new programs in the works, we are dedicated to helping our South Minneapolis community thrive. Here are some of the key initiatives underway. 

Advancing Public Safety and Racial Equity 

Located in a historically Black community on the 38th street corridor, Sabathani is committed to supporting the communities of color that have been underinvested in and underrepresented for far too long. One aspect of this work is looking at how we can take a more holistic health approach to public safety, but it’s also about advocating for changes in policing to eliminate the systemic targeting of Black, Brown, and Indigenous individuals. We recently hosted a conversation with the Department of Justice to gather community input on transforming the Minneapolis Police Department. Join us for the next conversation on Tuesday, July 25 at 6:30pm at the Sabathani auditorium to make your voice heard. 

Addressing Homelessness and Affordable Housing 

At Sabathani, we have been reflecting on the growing prevalence of homelessness in our community and considering new approaches to address this issue. We believe that housing is a human right and with a more relational approach, we can build trust and make a more significant impact. We our thrilled to partner with Hennepin County Continuum of Care to address the members of our community facing homelessness. With this new partnership, we will hire new staff dedicated to assisting our unhoused neighbors in finding permanent shelter. Additionally, our new affordable housing project, a 70+ unit building that will be built on the Sabathani campus, aims to provide more affordable rents to community members struggling with housing costs. Join us for community conversations on August 10 and September 14 at 6:30pm in our Banquet Room to learn more and provide your input for this project. 

Working toward Climate Justice 

Through a Community Needs Assessment, we learned how our community members value protecting the environment so that we can all have clean air and water and a sustainable future. Sabathani aims to be a model for climate justice in the region by retrofitting our building with renewable energy technology and, in the process, creating new green jobs. Our Community Energy Project is making progress in making our building more energy efficient. Our roof renovation is nearing completion, and we have been actively seeking funding for the next big step, replacing our aging boilers with an energy-efficient Geothermal HVAC system. Stay tuned for opportunities to support this ongoing effort to create a sustainable future for our South Minneapolis community. 

Welcoming a New Career Specialist 

Sabathani welcomes Maria Sorensen as the new coordinator for our Workforce Strategies program. Maria brings a wealth of experience in program management and community service with specialized skills in data tracking for optimizing outcomes. She is passionate about expanding our workforce program and helping community members secure livable wage careers. Save the date for the Xcel Energy-sponsored career fair on Saturday, September 9, where you can explore employment opportunities and join the community celebration. 

Combating Diabetes in Our Community 

Thanks to a generous grant from United Healthcare, Sabathani is preparing to launch a new program to tackle the prevalence of diabetes in the Black community. This program, developed in partnership with a number of local healthcare professionals and organizations, will provide resources for all generations to prevent and manage diabetes. We aim to organize a network of existing resources, initiate new services, and create space for community activities that promote the health and well-being of our residents.  

Expanding Hours for Food Distribution 

We are pleased to announce expanded hours for our Food Distribution Center, now open on the first and third Fridays of every month from 10am to 1pm. Our client-choice model allows individuals to personally select their groceries. Over the past three months, we have served over 11,430 individuals and distributed 111,506 pounds of food. We’re proud to share this program has recently received a generous investment from Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America. Thank you, Allianz, and thanks to all the foundations, government programs, and individuals who support our Food Distribution Center and all our programs. We couldn’t do it without you.  

Supporting Every Generation through the Summer 

Our new Sabathani Summer Youth Program is now underway with opportunities for our community youth to engage and connect. Alongside this program, we’re partnering with Smart North, whose Community Tech Hub equips youth with the skills needed for the digital age. Also, this summer, we’ve welcomed three teenage interns through the Step Up Youth Employment program, allowing them to gain valuable experience in our various departments. Additionally, Sabathani is offering seniors, aged 55 and up, a two-session Computer Class to introduce basic digital skills for using a laptop or tablet. 

Planning Our Strategy  

Our new strategic plan, developed through collaboration with key stakeholders and a Community Needs Assessment survey, is nearing completion. Led by consultant Paula Forbes, we have worked closely with our Board of Directors and staff to identify our goals and activities for the next three years. Stay tuned for further updates as we finalize the plan by mid-August. What I can say now is that so much of what you’ve read about here is the focus moving forward, the broad spectrum of support for all generations, to move from surviving to thriving – all aimed to build a prosperous community for all.  

Ways to Get Involved 

Join our email list for regular updates about all our ongoing projects and upcoming activities right in your inbox. If you’re inspired to support our work, consider making a donation today by clicking here. Additionally, we offer exciting volunteer opportunities for those who want to actively contribute. To learn more, email info@sabathani.org.  

3 thoughts on “Updates from Sabathani: CEO Redd’s Summer 2023 Message”

  1. Melinda J Anderson says:

    In wonderful Instagram contacts I have had with Sabathani Community Center, I just may be interested in volunteering. I would be happy to send my resume so you can learn more about me if you wish. I live in St. Paul though but I still do like Minneapolis plus come to Minneapolis frequently.

    1. jleaf@sabathani.org says:

      Thank you for your message, Melinda. We would welcome your volunteer support. Currently, we have volunteer positions available for the Food Distribution Center, Clothing Closet, and as a volunteer in case of emergency shelter. Since you live in St. Paul, the shelter associate position probably would work for you. However, if you’d like to look at volunteering for the other, please visit the Food Distribution Center and Clothing Closet program pages for links to sign up, or email us at info@sabathani.org to follow up.

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