Currently, Zion Community Enterprise (ZCE) is a cohort participant in the Enterprise Community Partners’ Faith-Based Development Initiative (FBDI) in order to design affordable senior housing opportunities so people can live in decent housing with dignity. Enterprise references the prophet Nehemiah as a classic case study in leadership and faith with the rebuilding of the wall for the city of Jerusalem.
In November 2015, Zion Community Enterprise, Inc. (ZCE) was incorporated as the not-for-profit 501(c)3 community-based development corporate “arm” of Zion Baptist Church with a mandate to allow for the promotion of healthy communities in the Washington Metropolitan Area by providing critical support to families in crisis.
Zion Community Enterprise’s motto is “Healthy Families Make Healthy Communities” and the overarching mission of Zion Community Enterprise is accomplished by encouraging and empowering families through training, advocacy, crisis intervention, temporary housing opportunities and other community engagement programming.
The mission of Zion Community Enterprise encompasses the following core principles: (a) To provide quality day care for seniors and respite care opportunities for families caring for elderly family members; (b) To promote and provide affordable housing options including multi-family housing units and temporary housing for families in transition; (c) To advocate and promote programs and create environments that are conducive to healthy families; and (d) To provide quality training and educational resources such as parenting skills, computer literacy and financial literacy, job readiness training, employment and entrepreneurial development.
Zion Community Enterprise, Inc. intends to be a self-administered and a self- managed community-based development corporation (CDC) that will focus on the development of affordable senior housing options in and around the Washington Metropolitan Area. We will seek to engage in the development of appealing designs of affordable senior housing that will meet the needs of many of our seniors living in the Washington Metropolitan Area. We will strive towards becoming an advocate for affordable senior housing development opportunities in the Washington Metropolitan Area with an active presence in all eight wards of Washington, D.C.
Zion Community Enterprise is domiciled at 4850 Blagden Avenue in upper northwest Washington, D.C. (Ward Four). Currently, Zion Community Enterprise is a cohort participant in the Enterprise Community Partners’ Faith-Based Development Initiative (FBDI) in order to design affordable senior housing opportunities so people can live in decent housing with dignity. Enterprise Community Partners provides grants to Community Development Corporations (CDCs) and Community Housing Development Organizations (CHDOs) in order to enhance their capacity and ability to carry out affordable housing and community development activities that benefit low- and-moderate-income families and persons.
The three members of the Enterprise Community Partners’ Faith-Based Development Initiative cohort development team are: Rev. Dr. Keith W. Byrd, Sr. (Pastor of Zion Baptist Church), Trustee James E. Brown (Member of Zion Baptist Church Trustee Ministry) and Brother David J. Saunders (Chairman, Zion Community Enterprise). It should be noted that Zion Community Enterprise was specifically established to be the community development corporation (CDC) partner of Zion Baptist Church.
The Governing Board of Directors of Zion Community Enterprise that was chosen by Zion Baptist Church for a two-year term (2021-2023) are as follows: Brother David J. Saunders (Chair), Trustee James E. Brown (Vice Chair), Brother Horace Jeffery Abney (Treasurer), Sister Maureen A. Barnes (Secretary), and Rev. Dr. Ella V. Redfield (Chaplain). Please refer to Bio-Sketches for details of the qualifications, experience and expertise of these individuals.
The Governing Board of Directors will be charged with implementing a five-year strategic plan for Zion Community Enterprise and will provide an annual report of their progress to the members of Zion Baptist Church (i.e. – ZCE stakeholders) detailing the status of ongoing initiatives, activities and programs.
Zion Baptist Church has three properties that it owns outright with the Main Campus and a Family Life Center located in Ward Four of Washington, D.C. and a North Campus located in Wheaton, Maryland. Zion Baptist Church’s real estate development vision is to maintain and expand our senior day care center program at the Family Life Center while also developing affordable senior housing on the Family Life Center. We are also considering developing a multi-use property at our North Campus. In addition, we are considering acquiring another property that is currently a private school in order to “repurpose” for community-based activities and services.
Zion Community Enterprise’s vision is to “repurpose” the existing Family Life Center property located at 4817 Blagden Avenue, N.W. into affordable, safe, and quality housing for seniors located in Ward Four. Rev. Dr. Keith W. Byrd, Sr., the Pastor of Zion Baptist Church, firmly believes that in the Nation’s Capital, affordable housing for our seniors should be located in those communities that they have lived in and contributed to over their many years of life.
By working with our strategic partners at Enterprise Community Partners, the District of Columbia Housing Authority, and Industrial Bank, as well as with the affirmation of the Zion Baptist Church membership, Zion Community Enterprise can take action to realize the full promise of providing our seniors with a variety of affordable housing options in Washington, D.C.
As part of our strategic plan to become a key advocate for affordable senior housing community-based development opportunities in the Washington Metropolitan Area, we will adopt best practices and lessons learned in the housing industry. Zion Community Enterprise, Inc. will over time also perfect strategies that will help us to become an affordable senior housing development advocacy specialist.
Lastly, Zion Community Enterprise will at all times demonstrate its commitment to affordable senior housing development initiatives, both individually and collectively with partnering stakeholders, by actively advocating in our communities and integrating sustainable business practices wherever possible. We will intentionally strive to ensure that we hold ourselves accountable to the highest standards by meeting our client’s needs precisely and completely.