Self Enhancement Inc. - "Life Has Options"

kids and mentors on a stage, at a podiumEverything has a beginning. For Self Enhancement Inc, one of Portland’s leading multi-service organizations, that beginning came in the summer of 1981. A local community leader held a week-long basketball camp so that Black youth could have a positive outlet. Forty years later, that camp has blossomed into a bouquet of resources and culturally responsive services that serve thousands of youth and families in North Portland.  And that community leader, Tony Hopson Sr, is the President and CEO of SEI.

Black History Month is a celebration of culture. This year’s theme is specific to the identity, diversity and representation of the Black family. By providing resources for primarily Black youth and families, SEI brings this year’s theme to life. They believe that every child has a gift and that it is everyone’s duty to help them find it. Their strengths lie in meeting the often complex needs of those who seek their assistance.

CareOregon recognizes the life-altering work that our partner SEI does. We believe that good health is more than just health care. It’s housing. It’s food. It’s a stable job. It’s all the resources that SEI provides. That’s the reason we lend a helping hand to further their mission of providing hope, guidance and opportunities for success in the Black community.  Through our COVID-19 relief assistance grant in 2020, we were able to help SEI purchase and distribute personal protective equipment (PPE) to families, as well other aid (food, clothing, school supplies). A good example of The CareOregon Effect in action.

At SEI, they teach that “Life Has Options.” Their programs help people realize what they are capable of doing and being. We applaud the work that they do for a community already marginalized by systemic racism, and we support them on the path to equity.

If you want to know more about Self Enhancement Inc or their services, you can find them at  

And if you want to see how they are celebrating Black History Month, you can do so here.

Group of SEI staff posing with school supplies