Black cultural store in Oak Cliff gets ‘blessing’ donation after vandals turn up the heat

Unique Contributor

Composed by

Cassandra Jaramillo, How We Live writer

Get in touch with Cassandra Jaramillo

Akwete Tyehimba has opened the doors for her clients at Pan-African Connection every day today, working in stifling temperature levels after vandals harmed her shop's air-conditioning units.Unable to afford the$20,000 replacement expense simultaneously, the shop turned to using huge fans to assist cool off clients and Tyehimba.The story moved Yesenia Garcia and Carmen Smith of NTD Mechanical Professional, a Garland-based air-conditioning company. On Saturday, the owner called Tyehimba to donate air-conditioning units and labor to Pan-African Connection. Owner Akwete Tyehimba figure out gowns at Pan-African Connection in Dallas.(Jae S. Lee/Staff Professional Photographer) "I'm very happy. When they called me today, I was in tears, actually.

I was speechless," Tyehimba said.Garcia, vice

president of sales and marketing at NTD, said she grew up in Oak Cliff and wished to assist the small company that was on the street where she invested her childhood.Garcia talked to the owner, Carmen Smith, and the two chose to reach out to Tyehimba to assist. Pan-African Connection was developed by Tyehimba and her late husband, Bandele Tyehimba, almost 30 years back. The couple started selling books and artifacts from the African diaspora, all while balancing their full-time jobs and taking turns working shifts at the store." It felt best to help someone who's in the heart of the community,"Garcia said.A service technician was sent out to the store to examine its needs on Saturday. Garcia said that the business is working as rapidly as possible

to get the shop running with cool air.As of Saturday, the neighborhood had also raised a little bit more than$5,000 for Pan-African Connection. Tyehimba stated that she is planning to utilize the extra funds for air-conditioning cages for security.Tyehimba stated she was moved by

the acts of generosity. The 3 females had actually unknowned each other prior to Saturday."No strings attached. Simply wanting to assist you," Tyehimba stated of her benefactors 'deal."It was a godsend.