She Built This City is committed to giving young women the tools to build Charlotte’s future… literally. After 20 years in the construction industry and often being the only woman in the room, Demi Knight Clark founded the non-profit organization as a way to get women and girls aged 9-17 interested in construction and trade work.
Demi launched She Built This City with a powerful goal in mind: to help women represent 50% of professionals in the industry by 2030. Moving towards equal representation is important in all fields and trades, especially those that have been historically male-dominated.
She Built This City was well underway towards making this goal a reality but then COVID-19 struck and the organization’s summer camps were canceled. But Demi didn’t let that stop her. If the community couldn’t come to her, then she would just have to take her organization into the community.
She Built This Air Stream
This line of thinking resulted in the purchase of an Air Stream and its subsequent conversion into a mobile lab. Starting in July, the Mobile Tool Lab (Powered by Generation T) will carry She Built This City’s mission and education far and wide throughout the community.
She Built This City’s new Cheif Operating Officer LaToya Faustin broke down the Mobile Tool Lab’s three main community initiatives. When you see the Air Stream around town, this is the impact they are creating:
“1. While They Work – We want to partner with organizations who offer job training/job prep courses for adults. We will offer 90mins – 2 hours worth of hands-on programming for youth ages 6+ so that their parents can focus on preparing for the workforce.
This will be the first step of building long-term relationships with these communities.
2. Women@Work – On the Go! – We will also focus on putting women to work. We’ll offer workforce development training from the Mobile Tool Lab with the Learning Zone. We’ll be teaching drone inspection technology, 3D printing, OSHA 10, and Forklift in order to get them immediate high-wage work.
3. We can fix it! – We are partnering with WD-40 and the Charlotte Toolbank to teach communities how to do the top 10 common home repairs. We will have virtual and in-person options…even 3D printing common components needed in repairs.
We realize that the needs of our community are rapidly changing and we will pivot wherever we can to ensure we are meeting both the short-term and long-term needs of those around us.”
Who is She?
The Mobile Tool Lab is set up for quite a journey of education, motivation and transformation in Charlotte but like all great vessels, she needs a name. Last week, She Built This City launched the #NameHer Campaign to find a suitable name that will represent the impact the lab will have on the community. You can vote for your favorite name over on their Facebook page and eagerly await the official name reveal on Friday, July 10th. Here’s the list of potential names:
- Sparky Sis
- Elise (after Elise Eaves)
- PowHer on Wheels (POW!)
To learn more about the Mobile Tool Lab or inquire about working with She Built This City, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
*Featured image via Sharon Dowell, the artist who painted the exterior of the Mobile Tool Lab
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