Walnut Hill: Community Development from The Enterprise Center

Brian Mallon and Leah Bright, a student at TK High School who is involved in one of the youth programs at The Enterprise Center.

The Enterprise Center in Walnut Hill is known for its neighborhood initiatives for community improvement and youth services. Brian Mallon, associate for community empowerment at TEC, shared his firsthand experiences with the programs.

A member of AmeriCorps, Mallon started his temporary position at TEC last August, where he will remain for one year.  The Enterprise Center offered experience with youth development and education, which is what initially drew him to the job. He was involved in TEC’s Community Development Corporation, which is responsible for engaging the Walnut Hill community in various programs and promoting revitalization.

Brian Mallon and Leah Bright, a student at Constitution High School, are involved in one of the youth programs at The Enterprise Center.

One of the programs within the CDC is the Education Initiative. This program is partnered with 15 of West Philadelphia’s public schools to work on parent and student organizing.

“We try to get parents organized and connect them to the right resources so they can advocate for their child’s education,” Mallon said.

Parent organization includes a parent council that meets once every month in order to give parents a chance to have a strong voice for their children’s education. Mallon said that he enjoyed being involved in these programs because of his interest in education in our country.

“I’m passionate about equities in our education system,” he said.

Mallon also mentioned the Street Team, which is an organization within the CDC. It is comprised of a group of 10 community members who are paid part-time by The Enterprise Center, and they travel from door to door providing information to residents.

“They go out in the street, and their goal is to reach every house in Walnut Hill at least 10 times per year,” Mallon said.