CHARP Projects and Partners

CHARP conducts action research projects in collaboration with community partners in Charlotte. Since 2011 it has engaged in several projects addressing community needs in neighborhoods and developing projects with organizational partners.

Current Projects

Achieving 10-minute Neighborhoods in Charlotte’s Corridors of Opportunity

Charlotte’s Future 2040 Comprehensive Plan envisions the creation of “10-minute neighborhoods” in which residents have access to daily destinations like grocery stores, clinics, parks, daycare, and living-wage jobs within a short walk, bicycle, or transit trip of their homes. Although being able to easily reach these kinds of essential resources is necessary for social and economic mobility, not all communities have equal access. We spoke with residents in two of Charlotte’s Corridors of Opportunity – West Sugar Creek and Central/Albemarle – to learn more about their transportation experiences and the challenges they face in accessing needed resources. Read more here.

Tenant Experiences in Corporate Landlord Housing

Last Spring 2023, students from the Qualitative Methods in Geography course, taught by Dr. Michelle Zuñiga, partnered with Jessica Moreno from Action NC to conduct a community-engaged project focused on understanding tenant’s experiences living in corporate landlord housing in Charlotte, NC. One of the major outcomes of the class was a report highlighting the themes that emerged from 30 interviews with tenants and participant observations including canvassing neighborhoods and attending county commissioner meetings. Read more here.

Community Needs Assessment

In partnership with the Harris YMCA, CHARP students and faculty are conducting a community needs assessment to support the Harris YMCA’s South Boulevard Initiative programming. Through surveys and focus groups, this work seeks to ensure that programming meets existing needs for residents along the South Blvd corridor and identifies new gaps that need to be addressed.

Tackling Food Insecurity in West Charlotte

A collaboration between community organizations and leaders in West Charlotte and faculty at UNC Charlotte and JCSU is leveraging research and long-time community expertise to tackle food insecurity in West Charlotte. This collaborative is developing a full-service food cooperative with community programming and gathering space as a sustainable, equitable, and economically viable food retail solution for a neighborhood experiencing years of systemic disinvestment. Read more here.

State of the Plate

In partnership with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Food Policy Council, CHARP students and faculty are supporting the State of the Plate Food System Assessment. Through several phases, this research provides information about the state of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg food system. In particular, through surveys and interviews we have identified food system assets and barriers, the impact of the pandemic on the food system, and how these actors contribute to upward mobility. This work is supported, in part, by a Gambrell Faculty Fellowship awarded to Dr. Colleen Hammelman and Dr. Nicole Peterson. A report of these phase 1 findings will be available soon.

Neighborhood Partners

Enderly Park

Neighborhood Meeting – First Tuesday of every month, 7pm at the Bette Rae Thomas Center

Graham Heights

Neighborhood Meeting – First Monday of every month, 7pm Walls Memorial AME Zion Church

Reid Park

Neighborhood Meeting – Second Tuesday of every month, 6pm at the West Charlotte Church of God

Washington Heights