Majeedah Rashid is the COO of the Nicetown Community Development Corporation (CDC), an organization dedicated to uplifting the community through education, better housing and financial stability. The Nicetown CDC has maintained that goal since its inception in 1999. Rashid continues to strive for improvement in one of the most impoverished parts of the city of Philadelphia.
How long have you been COO of Nicetown CDC?
I have been the Chief Operating Officer since 2003.
What made you get involved in community service?
I have been involved with customer service for more than 30 years. It started when I was assisting with a youth program in West Philadelphia, and later found out about a weekend (Thursday-Sunday) master’s degree program in New Hampshire. It had an economic development program that taught from a resident-driven perspective.
What is it like servicing a community like Nicetown?
It is very challenging, due to the fact that Nicetown is one of the most impoverished in the city, and faces all of the associated problems: weak school system, high unemployment rate, high crime, blight, etc.
What is your biggest achievement so far in your work throughout the Nicetown community?
The biggest achievement thus far for the Nicetown CDC is definitely our affordable housing developments, Nicetown Court I & II. (Total $30 million in investment, which has leveraged other projects in current pipeline.) Our achievements with educating and engaging the community are also well noted.
What are your goals as the COO of the Nicetown CDC?
To continue to identify and secure full funding and implementation of our neighborhood economic development and housing strategy and sports court plan. This, along with training and development of a workforce that provides living wages.
Are there any changes that you would like to see take place within the community?
The reduction and elimination of behavioral issues related to crime, drugs, literacy issues that are barriers to the restoration and improved quality of life that we are trying to establish.
-Text and images by Rasheed Reynolds and Chris Mastrobuono