Our mission is simple, but deep.
To equip African immigrants and refugees in the Greater Lowell area with resources to be actively engaged community members, through educational, social and cultural initiatives
The History of the ACCL
Founder & Executive Director
The African Community Center of Lowell (ACCL) was founded in August 2016. On October 29th of the same year, there was a ribbon cutting ceremony to commemorate its founding.
From working at the then African Assistance Center of Lowell and the International Institute of New England (IINE Lowell), Founder and Executive Director Gordon Halm, an immigrant himself, knows first-hand the significant hardships involved in trying to adapt in a different environment. There is the language barrier and a general loss as to where to go for basic services and ethnic foods, as well as not knowing where to go to offer one’s services to the new community.
ACCL has been a community effort. Halm reached out to the African Community to shape the vision of the Center. This vision became reality with the assistance of the Parker Foundation and the generous support from Community Teamwork Incorporated (CTI), who have partnered with ACCL to provide office and meeting space and to initially serve as the Center’s fiscal agent. Professor Paula Rayman, a retired Professor of UMass Lowell upon hearing about the opening of the African Community center remarked, "Gordon, you kept your eyes on the prize".
In April of 2021, ACCL became its own 501(c)(3) Non-Profit organization! This is very exciting for us as we branch out on our own to grow and meet the challenges and opportunities of the days.
With continued support from the community, and individuals like you, ACCL hopes to fulfill its vision of helping new immigrants and refugees settle and be responsible community members, successful leaders and role models for future generations.
A vision like ours needs all hands on deck as our success depends on everyone’s support and participation.