ACCESS is pleased to announce that its Growth Center is now an official program of the Arab American National Museum (AANM), one of the organization’s three national institutions.
As a former department of ACCESS, the Growth Center has traditionally served as an entrepreneur resource center, focused on providing services and support to underprivileged immigrant, minority and women entrepreneurs and small businesses in underserved neighborhoods and communities in Detroit and its surrounding suburbs.
As a Museum program, the Growth Center will continue to focus on the development of entrepreneurs and new independent businesses by immigrants and refugees, as well as in the burgeoning local art scene, of which the Museum is an anchor institution.
“The addition of Growth Center offerings reinforces the Museum’s strategic plan by delivering impact outside the Museum walls, directly into the community,” states AANM Director Devon Akmon. “It also supports AANM’s work in creative placemaking, which is defined by the National Endowment for the Arts as ‘a process in which partners from public, private, nonprofit and community sectors strategically shape the physical and social character of a neighborhood, town, tribe, city or region around arts and cultural activities.’”
“The relocation of our Growth Center is part of our many efforts to continue to streamline our programming, so that we can make the greatest possible impact on a regional and national level,” says ACCESS CEO and Executive Director Hassan Jaber. “We are excited about the opportunities this move will create for our clients and stakeholders, and we are confident that this new partnership between one of our most coveted national institutions and one of our most innovative programs– along with Museum Director Devon Akmon’s proficiency in urban planning– will help further our revitalization efforts in Detroit and the surrounding region.”
About the Growth Center
The Growth Center’s programs and services include entry level entrepreneur and small business training and workshops, business technical assistance, microloans, peer mentorship and support, connectivity to resources in the local entrepreneur ecosystem, and ‘Pop-Up Shop’– a retail business incubator that allows local/low-income small business owners to receive direct market access and hands-on training in retail product development, pricing and presentation. These programs and services are delivered in a culturally and linguistically appropriate manner for the communities we serve.
About the AANM
The Arab American National Museum (AANM), a national institution of ACCESS, documents, preserves and presents Arab American history, culture and contributions. AANM is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums; an Affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution; and a founding member of the Immigration and Civil Rights Network of the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience.
Grounded in a grassroots commitment to serving our community, ACCESS has a 45-year history of providing health, education, employment and social services. An Arab American nonprofit of excellence, ACCESS empowers communities in Southeast Michigan to improve their economic, social and cultural well-being and extends this mission nationally through advocacy, arts, culture and philanthropy.