The West Nashville Dream Center is a local 501 (c)(3) committed to PROTECT and EMPOWER those living in crisis. Their programs serve the Clifton Pike/40th Avenue neighborhood, the Preston Taylor housing community, and three of the surrounding income-based apartment complexes in both the 37208 and 37209 areas. One of the ways they build awareness of their programs and the neighborhoods they serve is their annual 5K race set for February 29, 2020. Five kilometers is the same distance many families would have to walk or take the bus to get groceries. Their 5K is a unique race in Nashville because the route takes you through the middle of the neighborhood where they serve. This year's event will be particularly special as it will start and end at their brand new facility at 520 39th Avenue North (slated to open in March 2020).
The cost of the 5K race is $35, and proceeds help fund their programming budget. Registration includes a t-shirt and race bib. The 5K race begins at 10:30 AM. Immediately following the awards ceremony, participants and their families are invited to stay for an after-party featuring a health fair with local vendors. They also include a free fun run for participants 12 and under, which starts at 10 AM. Additional registration and event details are found here: www.westnashdc5k.com.
Since losing their original location in June of 2018 due to the landlord selling the property, they took their ministry mobile and have grown their food program from three days a week to mobile sites seven days a week. Because of their partnership with Second Harvest, they have extended partnerships with Whole Foods, Sprouts, Aldi, and Trader Joe's grocery stores list, rescuing an average of 5,000 pounds of food per month. This food, in turn, feeds nearly 2,000 community members a month.
"It's incredible to say we feed thousands of people, but that's just meeting a basic human right. If we get too excited about this we miss the incredible opportunity to empower through relationship. We call it the magic in the middle. It's when we stop 'helping people' and become family to them instead." TJ Fletcher, West Nashville Dream Center Executive Director
Living out the empowerment piece of their vision will flourish once they have their new home base.
"We have proven we can do a lot without a building. But what we have created isn't just a set of programs. It's a family, and a family needs a home." TJ Fletcher
NeighborhoodScout's exclusive analysis reveals that the Clifton Pike / 40th Ave N. neighborhood has more single mother households than 99.0% of the neighborhoods in the U.S. Because of this, stat, single mother-led homes, and their children are one of the main demographics they serve. Their new home will be a place where things like community meals are provided and professional development classes are held that help foster opportunities for growth both emotionally and financially. Food donations will be housed out of their new facility, and they plan to continue five of their seven mobile food sites due to the success they've had this past year.
To learn more about the West Nashville Dream Center and how you can be part of the dream, visit www.westnashdc.com or follow them on social media at @westnashdc.