We at Oaklandish are proud to present the 2012 Innovators Awards winners. These grants are our way of giving back to the city that gives so much to the world — and of recognizing the unsung local heroes who walk among us. And these partnerships are about more than writing a check — we also work with these groups on events, collaborative designs, awareness campaigns, and more.
We also offer an authentic thanks to all of you who support Oaklandish, and know that our community has something for everybody only because, and only when, it is created by everybody.
In 2000, Marilyn Harris’s son Khadafy was shot and killed while riding his bike West Oakland. The crime remains unsolved, but Harris’s experience inspired her to provide support to other grieving families. In the aftermath of a homicide, people can turn to the Khadafy Foundation for help with everything from funeral expenses to grief counseling, food, and child care. Since 2003, the program has served over 800 local families. In addition, they work tirelessly to stop the cycle of violence by preventing crimes and retaliation.
Town Park was created in 2007 by local artist and arts educator Keith “K-Dub” Williams with the help of the local skateboard community at historic De Fremery Park in West Oakland. The goal was to create a facility that would allow youth to stay in their own community instead of traveling to neighboring city skateparks. The site has become a destination park for many local youth and adults of all ages, skill levels, and backgrounds, and has become a hub where everyone can come together to learn and showcase their skills. The grant will go fund program that help local youth to build, paint and skate a permanent, all-weather skate park.
Caught in the Crossfire is a hospital-based intervention program that hires young adults who have overcome violence in their own lives to work with youth who are recovering from violent injuries. These highly-trained Intervention Specialists offer long-term case management, links to community services, home visits, and follow-up assistance to violently injured youth. The purpose is to promote positive alternatives to violence and to reduce retaliation, re-injury, and arrest. This program was the first of its kind in the nation, and led to the founding of the National Network of Hospital-based Violence Intervention Programs.
25th Street Collective, a sustainable business incubator, is bringing local industry back to Oakland. Their Innovators grant will fund a pilot program that brings high-tech garment manufacturing to our city. The program will focus on producing custom-made, sustainably-sourced garments, while educating local youth about sustainable business practices. The first pieces from the collection will be a t-shirt and a yoga pant. The goal of the program is to create quality inner-city work opportunities, while introducing Oaklanders to local, made-to-order clothing.