sierra leone communinty in minnesota
who we are
SLCM is an umbrella organization formed to serve organizations and people within the Sierra Leonean and related communities in the Twin Cities area of Minneapolis and Saint Paul. While our services are often culturally specific, the communities served include families with people born in the United States and from other African countries.
The West African community in the Twin Cities area, constituting about 250,000 persons, interacts and collaborates frequently with SLCM. We serve a geographic area that includes St Cloud, parts of Anoka County, Hennepin County, Ramsey County, parts of Dakota County, and Washington County. Most of the centralized activities are in Hennepin and Ramsey Counties.
SLCM is a membership-entitlement organization. All persons in the state of Minnesota who were born in Sierra Leone, or are part of a Sierra Leonean household are entitled to membership and full participation. There is no membership fee required.
To serve as an umbrella organization for the Sierra Leonean community in Minnesota, providing leadership for capacity building, strengthening community, and addressing social needs and disparities.
SLCM provides services and programming for our base population and related communities to promote wellness, justice, equity, and build social and economic capacity. Programs focus on areas of socioeconomic disparities in areas such as health outcomes, education, wealth and income, and criminal justice.
We also provide cultural education on Sierra Leone and the relationship to African American history. With some of the major slave ports of the 16th century located in Sierra Leone, research shows that over 30% of African Americans can trace their ancestry to that country.
SLCM partners with smaller organizations within the community, and collaborates with other communities of color, and organizations that promote justice and equity to reduce education, justice, and health disparities, and to promote cultural education.
What we do
SLCM’s approach to reducing disparities and improving quality of life includes
SLCM is a founding member of the West African Collaborative (WAC), an organization of West African immigrant communities that provides collaborative leadership to build social and economic equity for the communities of over 250,000 persons.
SLCM also partners with professional organizations such as Nurses Associations, Tobacco Control nonprofits, Research organizations such as the Wilder Foundation, and state organizations such as the Minnesota Department of Health as part of its programming activities.