The Perry Hilltop Citizens Council (PHCC) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to stimulate civic and social action on a non-sectarian, non-partisan and interracial basis to benefit all residents and to improve the quality of life for all residents and business enterprises within the Perry Hilltop neighborhood.
PHCC seeks investment in its neighborhood's properties, starting with the commercial blocks just a mile from housing and retail redevelopment on Federal Street in the Central Northside. Three or four blocks of Perrysville on each side of Charles Street were once filled with stores, bars and restaurants, even a theater. Disinvestment has failed the neighborhood over decades. PHCC is working to with neighbors to revive the corridor.
The Perry Hilltop Citizens Council (PHCC) was established in 1962 when a subsidized public housing project was built in the all-white and largely rural Perry South neighborhood, bringing with it 1,000 families -- 95 percent of whom were black. PHCC was formed to unite residents around issues resulting from the new development. In 1972 former Mayor Thomas S. Murphy joined PHCC as Executive Director.
Under his leadership, PHCC organized a food cooperative, a community credit union, a drive to build a senior citizen’s highrise, and a campaign to end real estate blockbusting that encouraged white homeowners to flee the neighborhood. As a result of the solid foundation built by Mayor Murphy, PHCC went on to become one of the initial organizations to receive funding from the newly formed Federal Affordable Housing Program in 1990. The dollars were used to build affordable housing aimed at single parent households.
Today, PHCC plays an important role in community advocacy by developing housing, preserving green space and ensuring residents access to City services. PHCC also marshals volunteers for improvement projects including community gardens and neighborhood clean-ups.