Gentrification is happening many cities around the United States. In fact, nearly 20 percent of neighborhoods with lower incomes and home values have experienced gentrification since 2000, compared to only nine percent during the 1990s. But as many generational residents leave their homes due to high rent and mortgages, local ma and pop shops and neighborhood staple restaurants are suffering as well.
Artist and CEO of Underground Tree Projects, Dawn “Tree” Scales, created the ‘Be Rooted: Brown Business Tour,’ to help black and Latino businesses on the threat of closing. The idea sparked when the eight-year D.C. resident visited some of her favorite places and heard the owners concern about higher rent and bills.
“I kept repeatedly hearing they are struggling, and I’m seeing D.C. change before my eyes. D.C. looks very different and black businesses are struggling because of it. Everywhere, black businesses are struggling,” she says.
The tour consists of helping seven businesses in the D.C. and Baltimore area every month starting May 22, 2016. It will also feature local visual and vocal artists’ performances. Ticket sales and contributions on the tour will go towards each featured business and artist.
To get tickets and more information, click here.