Main Street Pearl in Takoma Park will launch Pearl Purpose, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that “makes space for youth on our Main Street,” according to an announcement on the shop’s website and Instagram account.
“Late elementary and middle school is tough on kids, on parents, and, well, everyone,” reads the announcement on Main Street Pearl’s website. “Kids are maturing at different rates, exploring independence, often expressing their identities for the first time. And they’re still kids – messy, loud, silly, physical, energetic KIDS. It’s hard for youth in the 3rd to 9th grade to find a hangout that welcomes them when they’re solo or with friends – and also welcomes their caring grown ups, younger siblings, and neighbors, too.”
According to their website, Main Street Pearl says that “by creating a sibling organization, we can:
- “Expand our already popular kidpreneurship programming – facilitating a broader engagement with Takoma’s business community – as we welcome kid entrepreneurs in our space for workshops, pop-ups, selling goods, internships, and SSL volunteer opportunities.
- “Become an official outpost for supporting queer youth and their caring grown ups through more robust partnerships with existing organizations, grant funding for Q-focused programs, and better meet the needs of our queer kids and their allies.
- “Expand our already popular creativity workshops – facilitating a more focused engagement with Takoma’s art community – as we welcome kid creators in our space for workshops, classes, art shows, and events.
- “Expand our already popular activism initiatives, becoming a physical outpost for kids to bring their civic hearts, organize, protest, donate, advocate, and be heard in their community. We will facilitate the connections between our elected officials and our kids in a more intentional and results-driven way.
- “Become a “home base” for other local youth-focused groups, clubs, and non-profit organizations who need meeting, workshop, and event space for their own service projects, workshops, and fundraising events.
- “Launch a tutoring program to compliment our already popular (and growing) homework club.”
Main Street Pearl opened last March at 7050 Carroll Ave. in Takoma Park. In August, the shop was the recipient of a $5,000 scholarship from Seoul Food DC, which honored Main Street Pearl for its youth offerings.
Graphic Courtesy Main Street Pearl