Reflections on Anchor Collaboratives – Lessons from the Baltimore Integration Partnership
Philadelphia’s Anchors for Growth and Equity (PAGE) is a new partnership between the Economy League, the City of Philadelphia and more than a dozen Philadelphia-area institutions that works to increase local purchasing by large institutional buyers to grow Philadelphia businesses, strengthen the local economy, create jobs, and build wealth. The BIP Director, Kurt Sommer, provided key note remarks as PAGE officially launched in late November. The remarks reflect on the experiences of the Baltimore Integration Partnership including efforts to set goals, address equity, initiate purchasing strategies, make a business case for inclusion, and collaborate with partners towards a common agenda. Read the Event Remarks and press coverage: ‘This is a business proposition … not charity:’ Philly’s eds and meds buy-local program debuts
Meet the Makers
A partnership with Made in Baltimore, the Port Covington Impact Team, and the BIP led to a strategy that kicked off this fall to connect the buying power of institutions and retail businesses to businesses that make and produce goods in Baltimore City. In early November, the collaboration led to a two-staged event hosted at the magnificent Sagamore Pendry Baltimore Hotel. Procurement representatives from the institutions as well as buyers from retail and other businesses were invited to “Meet the Makers” – a selection of over 20 businesses that make and produce goods in Baltimore City. The direct time enabled the buyers to engage with the businesses and learn more about their products and services. The second stage of the event was open to the public and designed to generate direct sales. More than 300 individuals attended the event. The initiative also includes a series of ongoing workshops to support business development and growth. Check Out Video Coverage of the Event. Didn’t get a chance to go? Be sure to Visit the Made in Baltimore store for your holiday shopping needs.
Creating Opportunities through Local Food
Continuing efforts to help catalyze and leverage the growing portfolio of Baltimore food businesses, the BIP partnered with City Seeds and School of Food this year to connect food service procurement representatives with local, small, and minority owned food and beverage entrepreneurs. This initiative included the planning, coordination and development of a local food business matching strategy for seven organizations that opted into the initiative. Purchasing needs were assessed through one on one meetings and technical assistance was made available to support the businesses during the process. Four of the seven participating organizations progressed to a stage of implementation. Outcomes included the launch of popup at LifeBridge Health that featured 7 business and led to ongoing sales with two; University of Maryland Medical Center purchased a Made in Baltimore cold case that features products from 6 local businesses in their cafeteria; Maryland Institute College of Art initiated contracts with four firms; and Sagamore Hospitality is incorporating local businesses and products in a range ongoing catering, gifts, and promotional activities.
Government Roles and Recommendations to Grow Economic Inclusion in Baltimore
What are the roles of government in fostering economic inclusion? What policy recommendations and actions should Baltimore stakeholders pursue to advance inclusion? The last chapter and the conclusion of “Collectively We Rise: The Business Case for Economic Inclusion in Baltimore” explores these two questions. The sections review existing city and state policies and programs that set out inclusionary opportunities for individuals, businesses and communities. Examples include minority business participation requirements, local hiring requirements, workforce development programs and key community development programs.
The conclusion finds that training to overcome implicit bias and structural racism enables institutions, businesses, and their employees to better understand and modify policies, practices, and behaviors to address historical dynamics and the racialized context of economic inclusion strategies. Further, it finds that any Baltimore-area business or anchor institution, regardless of its size or the resources available to it, can make contributions to economic inclusion. Finally, the conclusion details a variety of tools, recommendations and policy actions that businesses, institutions, public partners, and other stakeholders can take to create greater economic opportunities for Baltimore.
Read: Chapter 5: What Is The Role of Government In Fostering Increased Economic Inclusion In The Baltimore Region?
Read: Conclusions and Key Recommendations
Anchors and Partners in the News
• An arts-focused urban farm initiative is coming to Baltimore
• Officials Call Pimlico Redevelopment Plan a ‘Win-Win’
• Ravens Make $100,000 Donation to Job Opportunities Task Force
• Congratulations to Humanim’s Fall 2018 Administrative Training Graduates!
• Brewery, food hall planned for $26M Baltimore Food Hub project
Baltimore Resources to Support Economic Inclusion
The BIP has recently created two directories to support local hiring as well as local and minority purchasing opportunities.
• Workforce Resources in Baltimore: An Employer’s Directory of Workforce Organizations to Help Hire Locally
• Directory of Resources and Intermediaries to Help Find Minority-Owned, Women-Owned, and Local Business Enterprises
The Baltimore Integration Partnership is funded by the national Living Cities Integration Initiative, the Surdna Foundation and receives generous local support from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, The Goldseker Foundation, Associated Black Charities, The Baltimore Workforce Funders Collaborative and the Association of Baltimore Area Grantmakers (ABAG). ABAG acts as a backbone organization, coordinating and staffing the partnership.