In March 2020, The Walls Project in conjunction with community leaders and organizations across the city began hosting weekly virtual calls to gather a pulse on the growing COVID-19 crisis in Baton Rouge. While the calls initially sought to establish means of communication and coordination in response to the pandemic, it became clear that the needs of the community demanded long-term strategies and solutions to address the 9 Drivers of Poverty.
Every Friday for the past year, over 200 community leaders have gathered via Zoom to share information and begin the process of creating lasting strategic initiatives to combat the persistent and systemic issues plaguing Baton Rouge and Louisiana. Featured speakers discussed topics ranging from food insecurity to workforce development in the capital region.
On Friday, April 16th, the one-year anniversary of the community calls, The Walls Project and MetroMorphosis proudly announced their official partnership in creating the #OneRouge Coalition, which will spearhead nine respective coalitions to address each of the 9 Drivers of Poverty.
The #OneRouge Coalition aims to unite organizations already doing great work in the community through developed strategies leading to accomplished goals, more persons served, and the creation and sustainment of a state where residents have the power to escape poverty. Raymond Jetson and Sherreta Harrison of MetroMorphosis joined Casey Phillips of The Walls Project in calling for community commitment: by working together and preventing the siloing of information, civic and community leaders can maximize their ability to tackle the systemic barriers that allow poverty to flourish.
The organization has begun through an open-facing work document detailing organizations across Baton Rouge working directly to confront each driver of poverty. We encourage you to visit the document if you believe you or your organization can contribute to the coalition’s work!