Charter High School
Mt. Carmel is in the process of starting an all-boys charter high school in response to some of the problems our community faces in educating our young students.
Research shows that:
- African Americans are disproportionately suspended & expelled from Indiana schools
- Many AA males do not meet the minimum requirements for high school graduation
- Indiana ranks one of the 10 worst states in terms of AA males’ 4-year school graduation rates
Additionally, in light of the recent high school closings throughout the city, to include John Marshall in our own neighborhood, we see a need to support quality & accessible education for the students of our community.
Mt. Carmel envisions a school that will improve the educational achievement levels of African American males by providing an innovative curriculum, which prepares students for progression to post-secondary education and/or other career focused pursuits.
Community Garden/Farmers Market
The neighborhood in which our church is located is considered a food desert: an area, where particularly nutritious food is difficult to obtain, due to availability, affordability, distance or limited places to shop in this given area. The Community Garden and Farmers Market are in response to the food desert issue that exists on the far Eastside of Indianapolis, as it does in many urban and rural cities & towns around our country.
At the field on the Northwest corner of the church’s property, a 1.8 acre plot, is being converted into an Urban Garden where residents and church members will have access to locally grown produce. Additionally, we would partner with fruit farmers and chicken farmers to open a Farmer’s Market on our parking lot, one to two times a month.
Federal Credit Union
Due to the area’s low-income population: high poverty and unemployment rates; and a high dependency ratio, the far-eastside is deemed one of the most financially insecure areas of Indianapolis. A credit union is a financial institution that is a not-for profit organization owned by all of it’s members. Credit unions focus on helping their members save, borrow and receive affordable financial services. With at least three banks closing in the immediate area over the last several years, and a significant number of predatory lenders in its place (pay day loans, check cashing, pawn shops), the option of having a federal credit union in the community would lend to developing financial security to the area.
Mt. Carmel will embark upon spearheading the process of bringing a food co-operative to the far East side of Indianapolis to serve the nutritional needs of the community. Starting a food co-op involves building community support and locating the necessary resources and capital, this initiative will involve a three-stage plan to be implemented over the next few years.