There is a little known “device” and underused resource in the neighborhood. We refer to it as the “Mobile Discovery Center” or MDC for short. Its origin goes back to the days when RBAC didn’t have an office space and was looking for ways to hold nomadic office hours and be accessible to residents.
The opportunity came along in 2014 through A Beautiful Safe Place for Youth initiative, when the City of Seattle was awarded a large funding from the Byrne Criminal Justice Innovations grant to bring together professionals and neighborhood leaders (Seattle Police Department, George Mason University and local non-profits led by Seattle Neighborhood Group) to develop a community-led approach to reduce violence that affects youth. These place-based, data-driven interventions aimed at implementing non-arrest solutions. The result was a 30% decrease in criminal activity.
As part of ABSPY, RBAC initiated Corner Greeter, a weekly strategy to activate spaces, where violence historically used to take place. The MDC was conceived as a contraption to anchor our young engagement workers’ presence and provide a focal point to any neighborhood event for people to come for information or help. As we get into the Winter months, it also has the added benefit to provide shelter to our team. With it’s wired generator, it supports lighting, a PA system, a display screen, and hot water for coffee or hot cocoa, which we’ll happily hand out to anyone.
The MDC is a source of information. It is built out to receive and store resources from all the neighborhood service providers as well as businesses. So, don’t hesitate to take advantage of this asset. The flyers for your next quarterly schedule could be handed out by our staff or the video of your last event shared on our screen.
Finally, this multi-tasking trailer came to us American built all the way from Utah, because it was paid for by federal dollars, but it wouldn’t have such a cool design and unique identity without Rainier Industries. This amazing company, based right next door in Tukwila, can wrap up any vehicle and small or large building, like the Airport Way Starbucks containers or the London Olympic Stadium. You ought to think about them for your next branding project. They sure were a great support to us, always interested in helping out communities.
So next time you come across the MDC, please stop by and be sure to ask what’s happening in the neighborhood and how we can support you. We’d be happy to hear your story over a hot cocoa!
See you in the neighborhood.