Brian Coyle

Somali girls winning basketball trophy

Brian Coyle

The Brian Coyle Center is located in the heart of the Cedar Riverside neighborhood and is our busiest location serving over 7,200 people each year.

As a vibrant destination for children and families to connect with culturally relevant programming spanning from out-of-school activities to senior services to host of countless community and political events. The center promotes social and economic equality offering programs that builds strength and supports the entrepreneurial spirit of youth and adults. In addition, the Brian Coyle Center leases space to the following organizations: Confederation of Somali Community of Minnesota, EMERGE, Pan African Legal Aid and the Cedar Riverside NRP. We strive to unite people across ethnicity, generations and organizations to promote the academic, economic, and social wellbeing of all.

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Our Programs

  • FANS Scholars Program

    FANS Scholars program is a free college, career and life preparatory program for high school students in 9th-12th grade. This program provides students with a support system and activities to strengthen high school performance and to achieve success after graduation in college and career. The FANS scholar’s program offerings are varied and include workshops and seminars, introduction to career options, college tours, leadership development, civic engagement and ACT/SAT test preparation. In addition students receive academic support, mentorship and assistance with the college enrollment process. Students that successfully complete the FANS Scholars program are eligible to receive a small scholarship to assist with college expenses and their FANS Advocate support them through college graduation. Since its inception in 1988, FANS Scholars have received over $1,000,000 in scholarships.

  • Kids College

    Kids College is a literacy program that focuses on vocabulary expansion, fluency, comprehension and developing love of reading. This focused program offers one-on-one reading time with an adult for at least 30 minutes each day. In addition, youth receive homework help and a healthy snack. Tutoring is offered through a partnership with America Reads.

  • Afterschool Programs

    Daily afterschool programs for youth from kindergarten to 8th grade are central to Pillsbury United Communities' programming at four neighborhood centers. Whether learning from professional artists-in-residence at Pillsbury House + Theatre or stretching their athletic ability at Brian Coyle Center, PUC kids gain competence in the Six C's curriculum.

    The Six C's nurture competence, confidence, character, connections, community, and contribution in all young people who pass through Pillsbury United Communities programming.

  • Summer Programs

    With summer programs at four neighborhood centers, our work with youth from kindergarten to 8th grade continues throughout the entire year.

    Whether learning from professional artists-in-residence at Pillsbury House + Theatre or stretching their athletic ability at Brian Coyle Center, PUC kids continue to gain competence in the Six C curriculum, while having great summer fun. Field trips to museums and water parks, nature walks, and special projects make summer programs a special time for kids at our agency.

  • Crew

    Pillsbury United Communities’ Youth Action Crew bridges the gap in afterschool programming between 6th graders and teens with a service-learning program specially designed for youth in 6th to 8th grades.

    In CREW, which stands for Creativity, Respect, Employment, and Wisdom, students gain leadership skills through working inter-generationally, as they did on a story-telling project in collaboration with the Minnesota History Center. They discuss career and college preparation and, when successful, are given priority enrollment in FANS.

    In addition, CREW kids have worked on community beautification, hunger and nutrition, as well as fine arts like puppet making, and more.

  • Crisis Nursery

    The Crisis Nursery is available to parents experiencing and overwhelming level of stress from daily life challenges. Our goal is to reduce the stress level by providing emergency childcare and respite services, while offering a resources to ensure both parent and children are healthy and well.

    If you are in an abusive situation or you fear becoming abusive to yourself or your children, call 911 immediately.

  • Domestic Abuse Prevention

    The Immigrant Women's Advocacy Project works with women who are facing issues of domestic violence or sexual assault. Services are provided at the Brian Coyle Center, the Domestic Abuse Service Center in the Hennepin County Government Center, or wherever the client feels most comfortable in the community, free of charge.

    Staff speak Somali, Arabic, other East African languages and English and build close relationships with families to work through issues of domestic violence and sexual assault.

    IWAP also assists women who need help understanding and finding resources to adjust to life in Minnesota, including:

    Crisis intervention

    Housing and shelter concerns

    Daycare options

    Employment support

    Food support

    Legal advocacy, including one-on-one help with domestic abuse, police and court assistance

    General family issues

    Appointments can be scheduled ahead of time or walk in for services are available at both locations. To reach our Somali Advocate at the Domestic Abuse Service Center, please call 612.348.5073 or 612.348.6396.

    24 hour Crisis Line and connection to shelter: 612.876.9307 provided by Asian Women United.

  • Legal Clinic

    Volunteer Lawyers Network attorneys provide free legal advice and/or brief services regarding a variety of civil issues, such as debtor/creditor, consumer, housing, immigration, and general civil issues.

  • Healthcare Enrollment

    Healthcare Navigators are available at each neighborhood center to assist individuals who are seeking health insurance. Our trained navigators are committed to helping individuals and families find affordable plans that fit their needs.

  • Eliminating Health Disparity Initiatives (EHDI)

    Based on participatory community asset mapping conducted in 2012, EHDI aims to create systems change and promote health education and preventive healthcare for East African immigrants. Initiatives include: educational tools in Somali and Oromo, created in partnership with two mosques; development of heart healthy menu options at two East African restaurants in the Cedar-Riverside neighborhood; education about the importance of physical activity.

    For more information about EHDI, contact Awol Windissa at 612-876-9318.

  • Chronic Diseases and Diabetes Self-Management Program

    The Chronic and Diseases and Diabetes Self-Management Program provides a series of evidence based workshops for seniors on living with diabetes, health action planning, dealing with difficult emotions, life-skills, healthy eating, mobility and exercise. Classes are 2.5 hours long, and part of a six week series.

    To sign up for a class, or learn more about the program, contact Awol Windissa at 612.876.9318.

  • Healthy Cooking Classes

    Brian Coyle Center offers free, culturally relevant cooking classes designed to help Cedar-Riverside residents learn more about preparing fresh, nutritious foods. A focus is placed on using ingredients available in the Brian Coyle Center food shelf.

    To sign up for a class, or learn more about the program, contact Sara Denzer at 612.876.9366.

  • Food Shelves

    We believe no one should have to miss a meal and work tirelessly to ensure all individuals and families have access to culturally relevant and nutritious food. Pillsbury United Food Shelves are open to all Minneapolis residents in need.

  • Food Distribution Programs

    Produce Giveaway takes place on the 2nd and 4th Thursdays of each month.

    Commodity Supplemental Food Program: Brian Coyle Center distributes food to seniors 60+ years of age on the first Friday of every month. For more information contact Sara at 612-876-9366.

  • Sisterhood Boutique

    Sisterhood Boutique is a business venture designed and run by East African women, ages 14-23.

  • Triple C Coffee Cart

    Triple C Coffee Cart is a business venture led by East African youth, ages 14-21.