UPDATE: THIS IS A NEW PAGE. GOFUNDME HAD US "RECREATE" DUE TO A NEW PLATFORM. HOPEFULLY THEY WILL ASSIST LATER IN GETTING THE NUMBERS AND COMMENTS BACK LINKED. WE HAVE RAISED $37,714 SO FAR. THE AMOUNT ABOVE IS THE REMAINING. WE THANK YOU WHOLE HEARTEDLY. OUR STORY:
Evanston's 5th Ward is a historic landmark in the eyes of many, but unfortunately it is under-served like never before. Jacqueline White and Tosha Wilson had a vision to bring back some familiarity of love, life, laughter and loads!
THE BUSINESS--a marriage between necessity (clean clothes) and community-building through a cafe feel. This space will also include education initiatives, computers, tutoring, health initiatives, gardens and more. This would be a valuable addition to a ward that has no public school, no bank, and no grocery store, and to a city with just four laundromats--and those laundromats do NOT serve the 5th Ward. A place you spend hours in, but enter into a new world of community engagement. THIS IS NOT A CHEAP ENDEAVOR!!!!
The Laundry Cafe is a project of Florence Kid Inspired, LLC. The name comes from the street Tosha and Jacqui were raised on; the 1600 block of Florence in Evanston. This was a place that taught them how important community was. They come from a two-house family where there were 3 girls and 7 boys and they ran in packs. All the neighborhood kids were welcome, loved and all held each other accountable. Everyone knew it was the place to be. Togetherness was everything; it was survival. Florence Ave taught them to dream big and how to pursue those dreams.
They believe in creating an Evanston for everyone and economic development is the key. We can talk about crime, lack of education and all the other social ills in society, but we must build and keep building to change the mindset.
Full disclosure: Tosha and Jacqui had an option to open a simple turnkey laundromat and focus on retiring, but they could not walk away from Evanston. The decision has NOT been easy, but there is no quit in sight because it will be so worth it. They have been denied a business loan and took them to a small moment of defeat. They discussed that there would be no stopping in reaching the goal and that is how this platform came about in order to work around the red tape!
The gratitude already is beyond expectation. They love Evanston because Evanston loved them. Let's build something great for the 5th Ward and we promise to pay you back with hard work and dedication. The Black community in Evanston is dwindling and it's economic footprint is not what it used to be... LET THE GOALS BEGIN!
WHY THE FUNDS ARE NEEDED:
1. Starting a laundromat is a VERY expensive endeavor, but needed in our wardsThe Laundry Cafe Evanston . On average, it can cost $150,000 to $300,000 (but can be up to a million) to open a laundromat and often times more.
Due to us having a community spin to this chore, this project is at least 4x times the amount this campaign is asking for, so the more help the better. We want to show the banks that are community is in full support of this mission. The community stands with us.
2. Equipment and the brick and mortar are the brunt of this campaign's ask. Reaching this goal will help, but a lot more will be on the shoulders of Jacqui and Tosha and they are willing to take on the task, but a significant goal has to be reached. . Equipment, equipment, equipment. (Note: one 25 lb washer costs approximately $450 and many will be needed. Standard dyers are approximately $500 each and many will be needed).
3. Some things to know. They are registered under Florence Kid Inspired, LLC, and dba as The Laundry Cafe. They recently graduated from Sunshine's Small Business Academy (SBA) and continue receiving support and guidance from Sunshine.
OUR ASK IS FOR THE BROADER COMMUNITY TO HEAL AND BUILD, AND TOGETHER WE CAN MAKE IT HAPPEN!
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