Community Resources

Local Organizations

540WMain
540WMain is an online and community-based hub for accessible education and events that promote justice for all. 540WMain aims to create a cultural shift in perspectives and practice by connecting members to lifestyle programming informed by social justice and anti-racism strategies.  


Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ)
SURJ is a national network of groups and individuals working to undermine white supremacy and to work for racial justice. Through community organizing, mobilizing, and education, SURJ moves white people to act as part of a multi-racial majority for justice with passion and accountability. SURJ works to connect people across the country while supporting and collaborating with local and national racial justice organizing efforts. SURJ provides a space to build relationships, skills and political analysis to act for change.
Local Chapter:  SURJ ROC
Email: surjroc@gmail.com


Black-Owned Business Rochester
Black-Owned Business (BOB) Rochester is a culturally-relevant community and economic development resource for Black-owned, -operated, and -oriented establishments throughout Greater Rochester, New York. By empowering Black enterprise, public service organizations and affinity groups, BOB Rochester fulfills its mission of “all pulling together and in the same direction” to engage in the practice of Susu economics.


City of Rochester Community Recreation Centers 

This webpage provides detailed information for all nine R-Center locations such as contact information, hours of operation, maps, amenities and more.


Pillars of Hope 

Audience: Elementary and/or middle school students at select RCSD schools

The mantra “We’ve done it, and so can you.” holds true as African American and Hispanic professionals share their experiences and provide positive support to Rochester students.


My Brother’s Keeper Initiative

Audience: ALL RCSD students

44th President Barack H. Obama set out to address persistent opportunity gaps facing boys and young men of color in February of 2014 and Rochester responded by aligning with the nationwide initiative that same year.


Biz Kids

Audience: Rochester city youth ages 10-18

This interactive program provides interactive, applied business and entrepreneurial education to city youth through seminars and camps free-of-charge to City of Rochester residents.


Project S.T.R.I.D.E.

Audience: RCSD George Mather Forbes School No. 4. students

Supervising, Training, Relating Ideas and Developing Excellence; The brothers of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Incorporated Theta Omicron chapter are devoted stewards assisting with the academic achievement for African American males at George Mather Forbes School No. 4

MOCHA Center

Founded in 1996 as the Men of Color Health Awareness Project, The MOCHA Center has worked to educate Black and Latino men in Rochester and Buffalo about living a sex-positive life. Now in partnership with Trillium Health, it has turned into a community health center that offers both community and health in equal amounts–providing a safe place to network, socialize, and address any health issues you face.

Frederick Douglass Family Initiatives

Since its inception in 2007, Frederick Douglass Family Initiatives has been advocating for a more equitable world on the issues of human trafficking and racism. Co-founded by Nettie Washington Douglass, her eldest son, Kenneth B. Morris, Jr., and Robert J. Benz, FDFI is headquartered in Rochester, NY–a place Frederick Douglass once called home.


The Out Alliance

The Out Alliance (formerly known as the Gay Alliance of the Genesee Valley, or GAGV), has been serving the LGBTQ+ community since 1973. They provide programs, education, teen services, community outreach and education and also publish The Empty Closet, one of the nation’s longest-running LGBTQ+ newspapers. The Out Alliance offers inclusivity to all members of the community, regardless of race, ethnicity, age, religion or other components of identity or personal expression.


WocArt

WOC Art Collaborative is a multi-generational collective of Black womxn & womxn of color creators in Rochester. They are host monthly book discussions and long table discussions.


21st Century Arts

21st Century Arts is an ongoing initiative to disrupt racism in the arts and culture landscape in greater Rochester, NY.


National Organizations

The Southern Poverty Law Center is dedicated to fighting hate and bigotry and to seeking justice for the most vulnerable members of our society. Using litigation, education, and other forms of advocacy, the SPLC works toward the day when the ideals of equal justice and equal opportunity will be a reality.


The People’s Institute for Survival & Beyond

The People’s Institute For Survival & Beyond is a non-profit collective of multicultural, anti racist community organizers and educators with national and international reach. It provides a process that emphasizes critical analyses of systemic oppression.


Community-Created Resource Lists

Black Lives Matter Resources for Rochester, NY, and Beyond,” Rochester Community Media Center (RCTV).

540WMain’s Winter Reading List (Books You Must Read) in 2020,” by Calvin Eaton, December 29, 2019.

Reading Towards Abolition: A Reading List on Policing, Rebellion, and the Criminalization of Blackness,” The Abusable Past, blog of the Radical History Review.

The Abusable Past is the blog of Radical History Review, a scholastic history journal published by Duke University Press that promotes both historical scholarship and active political engagement. The Abusable Past complements Radical History Review with content related to the praxis of radical history in this social and political moment.

A History of Race and Racism in American, in 24 Chapters,” a list of primary resources compiled by Ibram X. Kendi for The New York Times.

 

Schomburg Center Black Liberation Reading List,” by staff at the New York Public Library’s Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, June 9, 2020.

 

#Charlestonsyllabus,” hosted on the website of the African American Intellectual History Society.

Conceived by Chad Williams, Associate Professor of African and Afro-American Studies at Brandeis University, in the wake of the Charleston, SC, shooting of June 17, 2015, this list of resources provides valuable information about the history of racial violence in this country and contextualizes the history of race relations in South Carolina and the United States in general. The resources also offer insights on race, racial identities, global white supremacy, and Black resistance.

Talking About Race” web portal, The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture.

This online portal provides digital tools, online exercises, video instructions, scholarly articles and more than 100 multi-media resources tailored for educators, parents and caregivers, and individuals committed to racial equality.

‘Goodreads’ suggested list of novels A curated list of novels revolving around Racism and Discrimination ranging from pre-teen, YA, Teenage to adult.

Pulitzer-Winning Books on Black History (Biography, History, General Nonfiction)