Nonprofit

Feature Story Kenzie Cleaves stands inside a vacant unit in her North Memphis apartment complex that she said has been unsecured for over a year. Unsafe housing conditions can increase COVID-19-related deaths. (Ziggy Mack)

In poor communities, toxic housing is a risk factor for COVID-19 deaths


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The impact and strength of the rich collection of active and creative non-profit organizations in Memphis cannot be underestimated. Foundations, non-profit organizations and hospitals make up a large percentage of the business community, and are thus significant employers. And in a town that is steeped in a history of grassroots movement and social activism, it was an easy lesson: when you invest in non-profits you invest in building a stronger community.

Our city can boast being a part of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital's sweeping goal to advance cures and prevention for pediatric catastrophic diseases through research and treatment (without denying treatment because of a family's ability to pay). Ducks Unlimited, headquartered here, is the world's largest waterfowl and wetlands conservation organization. From one-woman start-ups like Project Greenfork to the revolutionary new strategies in healthcare at the Church Health Center, our non-profits – large and small – are making big waves. Whether the groups are enriching lives with art and culture, or saving lives with critical research, Memphis has become a hospitable home for those who want to make a difference.