The Philadelphia Community of Leaders (PCOL) is an organization of African-American private sector leaders representing civic,nonprofit, religious, labor, business, and neighborhood organizations. We have come together to “collectively” address the disparities and unacceptable quality of life that too many African Americans face daily in Philadelphia. We have fundamentally come to understand, given the magnitude of the issues challenging African Americans in Philadelphia, that individual and/or single organizational responses are simply inadequate. Our issues are inter-connected, inter-related and require an organized “multi-faceted” response that no one organization or individual has the capacity to take on by themselves. The idea that “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts” is perfectly aligned with the purpose of PCOL and we must see ourselves as partners and not as competitors on behalf of the African American community.
PCOL will focus the bulk of its efforts on addressing the issues of “structural” poverty and near poverty that impact nearly two-thirds of the African American community in Philadelphia by over time significantly decreasing the economic disparities that the African American community faces. PCOL’s fundamental belief is that most, if not all of our issues, are entrenched within the economic disparities and by addressing poverty and the lack of resources (rising tide), all other areas will be corrected (lifts all boats). Therefore, PCOL’s has identified the following areas that we will organized and attempt to positively interrupt: