Mayoral candidate Cherelle Parker and Simply Way’s members. (Photo: Lili Daliessio)

Philadelphia, PA – Thursday, September 28th, 2023. Cherelle Parker, a mayoral democratic candidate for Philadelphia, embarked on a journey to connect with local business owners and nonprofit organizations. Her mission is to bridge gaps, offer support, and change in the community.

The first stop was in North Philadelphia to meet a successful business owner who used to have his business in South Philadelphia. State Representative Jose Giral helped him move to 932 E. Hunting Park Ave, to expand and bring jobs to the area. Jude Arijaje is the proud owner of Minuteman Press, and he was happy to have the mayoral candidate take her time to listen to what he has to say about his journey as an entrepreneur and how she will support small businesses like his.

State Representative José Giral had the opportunity to spend time with Democratic Party Mayoral Candidate Charelle Parker while she was visiting businesses in the community, Uriel Rendón, General Manager of Impacto Media, and Yasmin Auli, owner of El Coqui Bakery & Restaurant joined them. (Photo: Lili Daliessio)

The second stop was at The Simple Way, a food pantry of your choice. This organization offers food distribution, support services, neighborhood celebrations, Simply Way scholars in partnership with Eastern University, Simple Store, and open houses. The mayoral candidate meets with some of their team.

Mayoral candidate Cherelle Parker, state representative Jose Giral, and Shane Claiborne at Rawtools nonprofit organization. (Photo: Lili Daliessio)

The third stop was at Rawtools, co-founded by author and activist Shane Claiborne. Rawtools is a nonprofit organization located in the Kensington area, too. «Even metal crafted to kill can be re-crafted to cultivate life. Our first donated gun was an AK47, and we turned in a shovel. We have been doing this for ten years. We are nationwide, and Philadelphia is one of the host cities. If you want to donate your gun or bullets, we received, make it a beautiful art.»

Jude Arijaje, Minuteman Press’s owner, explains what He did to buy all his equipment. and what He can do with that specific machine. (Photo: Lili Daliessio)

The last stop was at El Coqui Panaderia & Restaurant, 3528 I St. It is a bakery featuring Puerto Rican pastries, cakes, and hot food, including breakfast, lunch, and many more. Co-owner, Yazmin Auli was happy that Mrs. Parker wanted to meet her, go to her bakery, and listen to her struggles and successes as a business owner and a Latina.

Mayoral candidate Cherelle Parker was impressed by how Minuteman Press’s owner succeeded by providing jobs to his community.

She shared with us what it means for her to be there and connect with these leaders with different backgrounds and the same love for their families and city. «Being here in North Philadelphia and meeting with business owners and nonprofit organizations represented access to economic opportunity. Another thing that Rep Jose Giral, leader Cruz, and I agree on is whether you want to reduce violence. Give people access to economic opportunity and jobs so they can earn, support their businesses that create jobs in the city of Philadelphia, and have the heart to put people on the path of self-efficiency. I describe myself as a teach me how to catch a fish girl. I do not want anybody to give me. Please give me the tools I need to do it myself. If we do that for people across the city, we will have less violence.»

Lili Daliessio is the Community Information Manager at Esperanza Housing and Economic Development.


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