Why South Linden?
According to the United States Census Bureau, a number of high-risk factors in South Linden have seen small improvement between 2000 and 2010. For example, the percentage of individuals with no high school diploma dropped from 35.6% to 28.4%. Likewise, the number of single mothers with children under age 18 decreased from 23.9% to 19.4%.
Still, South Linden remains among the poorest neighborhoods in all of Central Ohio, as reported by The Kirwan Institute at The Ohio State University. According to their opportunity map of Franklin county, South Linden ranks among the lowest neighborhoods for numerous opportunity categories including Neighborhood & Housing, Transportation & Employment, Health & Safety, and Education.
The most recent census reports that a staggering 43% of individuals in South Linden live below the poverty level, and public schools continue to remain in “Academic Emergency” according to the Ohio Department of Education.
Why Urban Concern?
After spending three years conducting a community needs assessment in central Ohio, Xenos Christian Fellowship formed Urban Concern in 1991, as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Urban Concern is committed to helping inner city youth in our community overcome challenges and thrive in the body of Christ.
What started out as a grassroots after school program and Bible study, serving just 17 students, has grown to be a beacon of light and transformative power for a community with high crime, unemployment and dropout rates; schools in “Academic Emergency;” and higher than average poverty and teen pregnancy rates.
Our staff and volunteers have received national and local awards for their service to the South Linden community, including The White House’s Point of Light Award, the World Vision Mustard Seed Award, and the Martin Luther King, Jr. Humanitarian Award.