The Ground Up Project

A community development project of DSE Enterprises in partnership with The Man to Man Project and The BLAC Coalition.

The Ground Up Project

A community development project of DSE Enterprises in partnership with The Man to Man Project and The BLAC Coalition

The Ground UP Project is an effort to revitalize property in African American neighborhoods while spurring new business development for their communities. Our first project is a commercial real estate rehabilitation effort in Detroit, Michigan. This business incubator property will contain two businesses that employ Detroiters, along with youth and young adults working as apprentices.

The Linwood commercial building will become the Black Legacy Advancement Center, centered at the heart of Detroit’s 5th District neighborhoods. Situated between LaSalle Gardens and the Linwood-Dexter communities, this transformed business incubator – run by and for Detroiters – will include:

  1. Two for profit businesses:

a. A barbershop

b. A take-a-way restaurant and catering kitchen

  1. A multipurpose training facility.
  1. Residential living for trainees.

Artwork by Arjan Jager of Orange Urban Design
www.orangeurbandesign.com

Black Legacy Advancement Center

8339 Linwood · Detroit, MI 48206, a commercial unit

This first building is a mixed-use property. Lodging for apprentices will be provided, where they will have the dual opportunity to live and learn independently while working responsibly. Through rigorous programming and formal work assigned during their time with the Ground UP Project, these youth and young adults will be prepared to succeed in their communities as strong contributing members of society and developed entrepreneurs.

Four residential apartments will be renovated on the second level of the Legacy Center facility. Mr. Marcus Brown, BLAC Coalition member and founder of Veracity Cutz, will operate a barber shop in the first commercial space. In the second space, we will operate a take-away food shop and catering service, led by a black-American chef-restaurateur. A full-service kitchen will be secured to make this space functional. One adult staff member will live in the residential space of the facility, serving as residential advisor to the apprentices also living on site.

Apprentices will be trained and employed in the Legacy Center’s barber shop and kitchen. Living accommodations will be offered at a reduced rate of $350 per month. The purpose of this discounted rate of rent is to empower the apprentice to aggressively save a down payment to invest back into their own business and/or property. The financial requirement will be to save forty percent of their monthly earnings in order to launch their entrepreneurial career. During this two-year period, apprentices living in the facility will receive training in business management, business planning, basic engineering, leadership development, and life skills; all to ensure that they are equipped with the necessary knowledge to be successful in their own long-term business venture.

The residential space above the businesses will house (4) studio apartments, (2) bathrooms, as well as laundry facilities. The commercial property sits on four total lots. In the first phase, a portion of the lots will be converted into parking. Another portion will be converted into a garden space for fresh produce.

In the second phase of the development project, apartment units will be built on these three lots.

The Man to Man Project – An Organization Partnered In Community Development

The Man to Man Project, Inc., is an urban educational outreach for at-risk male youth empowerment. For ten years, the organization’s mission has been to expose, educate, and empower the next generation of male youth of color, developing them as leaders in an urban context. We have served hundreds of young men, adding lasting value to their lives and employable skillsets. In this new decade, we are expanding our work to life skilling apprenticeships.

Man to Man mentees that stand out with excellent performance from their mentoring evaluations will be encouraged to apply to the program’s paid apprenticeships. Those individuals that are considered must have obtained a diploma or GED. Apprentices will have the opportunity to work in the Ground Up Project’s businesses, as well as be housed in an on-site apartment for two years. These students will have the dual opportunity to live and learn independently, as well as work responsibly.

Through rigorous programming and formal work assigned to apprentices during their time with the Ground UP Project, these youth will be prepared to succeed in their communities as strong contributing members of society. We will soon secure the two properties to house our registered apprenticeship programming. One residential property and one commercial building will be purchased and renovated for the purposes of their lodging, employment, and holistic development.

The Man to Man Project is an official 501(c)3 and outreach of the BLAC Coalition.

Dexter Sullivan Enterprises

DSE Enterprises is a results-based consulting agency, poised to provide tailor made solutions for professional development, organizational optimization, and brand management. Our six areas of service distinction include: leadership development, organizational management, real estate development, talent acquisition, event planning, and communication strategy.

DSE is committed to creating strategy around the evolving needs of organizations, while helping them clarify the vision and expectations for maximum impact. At DSE, we are committed to building people, and building communities.

The Ali Legacy House

909 Blaine Detroit Michigan 48202

The second property, The Ali Legacy House, is a residential duplex, named in memory of the original inspiration behind The Man to Man Project – the late Ismail Ali. The space will be used to house our (2) adult staff mentor-managers. By providing housing for staff at a discounted rate, we will decrease our overhead expense for salaries and operating costs. The residential property is in close proximity to the Linwood commercial property (1.3 miles), creating an additional layer of support for our apprenticeship program.

Partner With Us

The Ground Up Project needs partners that are willing to invest financially in its startup success. Your gift of any amount is critical to ensuring our purchase of the property and its rehab. As soon as this is completed, we will begin business and programming for Detroiters.

Cost of Project
$3,570,000.00

Dollar by dollar, and brick by brick, we are determined to reach our fundraising goal, in order to see the Ground Up project made a reality for the overlooked and underserved in Detroit’s District 5 community. We are determined to create this revolving door of opportunity that will perpetually turn out entrepreneurs that are prepared to thrive in reaching their entrepreneurial goals.

Sustainability

The Ground Up Project is a collaboration between DSE Enterprises, The Black Legacy Advancement Coalition, and The Man to Man Project, Inc. DSE will operate the facility, while The BLAC Coalition and the Man to Man Project will provide the programming, training, and educational components.

The Black Legacy Advancement Center will house DSE Enterprises, the Black Legacy Advancement Coalition, The Man to Man Project, two minority owned business rentals, as well as four single-tenant apartments. The site revenue for DSE will consist of rent paid from the operational business tenants and residents, sustaining the business’s long-term profitability.

For profit investments are to be made to DSE Enterprises. Tax deductible donations can be made to the BLAC Coalition or The Man to Man Project. As DSE Enterprises establishes profitable liquidity, further demonstrating its self-sustained long-term security, we will begin building additional living units on the remaining Linwood lots adjacent to the Black Legacy Advancement Center.

The Ground Up Project presents a unique environment within its urban context. It creates a safe place where seeds of potential can fully germinate in a learning setting equipped with the proper support and guidance.

Partner with the Ground Up Project today – a community development effort committed to uplifting people of color in an underserved community. Please consider investing in this pivotal real estate project. There is a tremendous value proposition at stake through Ground Up, and we anticipate retaining and rebuilding property in one of America’s historically black communities in Detroit.

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Contact DSE Enterprises by email at info@dextersullivan.org or by phone at 313-327-1449.

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To Donate online:

Visit us at www.theblac.co/donate
or by phone at 313-327-1449.

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To Donate by Mail:

Make all Checks and/or Money Orders out to BLAC.

Mail to:

BLAC
PO Box 32088
Detroit Michigan 48232
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Ways to Get Involved

Commission Members are those individuals that commit to partner with one or more of the sector initiatives to research and develop policies that will accomplish our goal of protecting and enriching the will of African American communities nationally.

Apprentices support the Board and the Commissions administratively, while also being facilitated through a leadership development program that will ready them for effective community service in their respective future.

Allies are advocates of the work, and support the cause in their activism, organizing, and fundraising. No official financial commitment is required to become an ally at this time.

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