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Philadelphia OIC operates under the philosophy of 'helping people help themselves'

The Eagles continue to support nonprofits that work to reduce barriers to opportunity and end racism. In support of Black History Month, the Eagles are proud to recognize the work of one of these nonprofits each day.

For more than 50 years, the Philadelphia Opportunities Industrialization Center (OIC) has assisted the unemployed, underemployed, homeless, and disadvantaged people of the city achieve self-sufficiency through education, training, and job placement.

In short, Philadelphia OIC has operated under the philosophy of "helping people help themselves."

In 2019, the Eagles lent a helping hand to the organization in the form of a $50,000 grant via the Social Justice Fund. Philadelphia OIC used the grant money to convert a meeting space into a state-of-the-art computer hub it dubbed the Eagles Career Nest.

According to Will Davison Jr., the Philadelphia OIC's vice president of marketing and communication, the organization serves the most impoverished communities in Philadelphia, which means most of its participants do not have access to the relevant technology to apply for jobs and to enhance their skills. The Eagles Career Nest now opens the door to that access.

"This is an environment where students can apply for job opportunities, research, study, and collaborate on their projects," Davison said. "A lot of our participants live in shared spaces that do not allow for focused study. Additionally, some participants are homeless and do not always have a place where they can go in between classes or their trainings to research, study, or decompress.

"It's a safe space which supports their efforts to achieve a better life and that's what we wanted to create."

Due to the pandemic, the computer hub cannot currently be used to its full capacity. However, it is still being used in a variety of ways including in-person classroom trainings, with room capacity limitations and social distancing measures in place. When it was operating at full capacity before the pandemic, the Eagles Career Nest was a favorite place to converge amongst the Philadelphia OIC's participants, according to Davison.

"It is a colorful and inspiring space. It is always lively and full of activity," he stated.

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