40,000 low-income middle school kids with no place to go this summer

From The Door, University Settlement House and Broome Street Academy:

 The Mayor has broken his promise to 40,000 low-income middle school kids, and we think that’s just plain wrong.

Until last week 40,000 low-income middle school kids were guaranteed a safe, enriching place to go this summer. Then the Mayor pulled the funding.

That’s right. Despite a promise made earlier this year, funding for middle-school summer camp was TOTALLY REMOVED from the Mayor’s budget. That’s unacceptable.

Summer camp can be saved, but only if we ACT NOW, as the City budget is being finalized, to demand summer camp funding is RESTORED.

Here’s how you can help:

  • Call 311 and leave a short message insisting that funding be restored for summer camp. This is the fastest way to take action given the short timeframe. You can use our suggested script, available on our website.
  • Text 311 at 311-692 with the following message: Mayor and speaker – save summer programs before it’s too late! Thousands of children won’t have safe & enriching programs and hundreds of staff will be out of work. We’re counting on you.
  • Sign this online petition. University Settlement alone will lose the opportunity to provide more than 600 children with a safe, nurturing summer camp experience. For low-income families, this is a crisis, not a luxury problem.
  • Share the following messages on social media:


   @NYCMayorsOffice @NYCCouncil 40,000 kids  are relying on free summer camp –
#savesummercamp by signing the petition

   40,000 kids are at risk of losing access to free summer camp, despite a promise from
the Mayor and City Council earlier this year for funding. With 6 weeks left before
school ends, we need to act now to #savesummercamp by signing the petition

We teach our kids that breaking a promise is just plain wrong. So we are shocked by the way this promise was broken by the Mayor’s office. The funds were there, the agreements with organizations like US signed, and we were in the middle of signing up families and hiring staff. Now these parents don’t know if their children will have a safe place to go this summer.

It’s wrong, short-sighted and, frankly, dangerous.

With school out in a few weeks, working parents need to know their kids have a safe place to spend their day that will also provide them with engaging, skills-building activities — like sports, arts, book clubs, field trips, and unique activities like chess, martial arts, photography and more.

Where will these kids go? What are we to tell parents who now have to find an alternative they can afford? Should they simply leave their kids at home alone?

Speak up with US now for the 40,000 New Yorkers – and the countless parents – who were relying on US for summer camp by taking one or more of the actions above.
We need the Mayor – and the City Council – to know that for our kids, it’s summer camp, not bummer camp

Thank you for supporting our family of organizations, and the families who count on us.


University Settlement 184 Eldridge Street, New York, NY 10002 | info@universitysettlement.org

The Door 555 Broome Street, New York, NY 10013 | info@door.org

Broome Street Academy 555 Broome Street, New York, NY 10013 | info@broomestreetacademy.org

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It’s MY Park Day in Sara Roosevelt Park – M’Finda Kalunga Community Garden, Elizabeth Hubbard Gardens

Beautiful day, beautiful people so many to thank and we won’t have all their names! But a few… Jin Xiu Chen and Jenifer Marcus all day providing activities for the children: making paper flowers and planting real ones! Bud Shalala for being on the grill all day, Penny Jones for tackling the hoses throughout the M’Finda Garden, Kate and Carol for sprucing up the front planters of the BRC Senior Center, Kirsti Bambridge (Partnership for Parks) for getting those amazing bird attracting plants, Terese Flores (Park Manager) for bringing them to us and for listening to the community, Andrew Knox for getting the sand for the sandbox, Bob for being Bob and organizing us, Lanzo for helping Bob, Debra Glass for leading us, The CSA for holding their first meeting of the season and Ted from Windflower farms – always generous with us, Roni – Sue for coming by with candy from Roni-Sue’s Chocolate Shoppe, Nini from the Evolve Health and Wellness for organizing the food, (both these small businesses are on Forsyth Street), too many more to name!!



Read MoreIt’s MY Park Day in Sara Roosevelt Park – M’Finda Kalunga Community Garden, Elizabeth Hubbard Gardens
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Sara Roosevelt Park It’s My Park Day: M’Finda Kalunga and Elizabeth Hubbard Gardens

Its My Park Flyer Sp 2015.doc Its My Park Flyer Eng 2015.docJoin us in our It’s My Park Day for Sara Roosevelt Park: This Saturday from 1-4pm our anchor space for all projects will be the M’Finda Kalunga Garden

in Sara Roosevelt Park at Rivington Street gate between Forsyth and Chrystie Streets.

Games for children, food and work! What could be a better way to spend this lovely Saturday?

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Welcome to Evolve Health + Wellness – AND Nepal Disaster Relief Effort

Evolve Health + Wellness  (the new business occupying the old produce warehouse on the corner of Rivington and Forsyth) 

Grand Opening Celebration

May 14th, from 6-9pm.

It’s a family gathering and meet and greet with all the practitioners of Evolve –  featuring snacks and drinks from some of our neighbors here.

They are also hosting a Benefit for the Nepal Earthquake victims at our clinic for the remaining Saturdays of the month. 

Providing community acupuncture treatments for donations, and all of the proceeds will be going toward direct relief in Nepal.


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EB-5 – intended to be a job-generator for high-poverty and high-unemployment areas-EB-5 is helping fund some of the city’s swankiest projects


Interesting article in DNAinfo

“The program, which enables developers to tap low-interest funding, is intended to be a job-generator for high-poverty and high-unemployment areas.

In reality, EB-5 is helping fund some of the city’s swankiest projects from some of the top developers like Silverstein Properties’ towering, ultra-luxurious Four Seasons Hotel New York Downtown rising at 30 Park Place, the Durst Organization’s Danish-desinged glassy pyramid-shaped high-end rental rising on West 57th Street and Kushner Real Estate Group’s NoMad tower at 281 Fifth Ave.

EB-5 has also been used for infrastructure and industrial projects like the George Washington Bridge Bus Terminal, Battery Park’s Pier A renovation, the redevelopment of Manhattan’s East River waterfront, and the expansion of Steiner Studios at the Brooklyn Navy Yard.”

Read MoreEB-5 – intended to be a job-generator for high-poverty and high-unemployment areas-EB-5 is helping fund some of the city’s swankiest projects
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May 31st Greek Jewish Festival on Broome (Allen and Eldridge)

Kehila Kedosha Janina synagogue located on Broome Street since 1927 presents: 


First Greek Jewish Festival

Broome Street (Allen and Eldridge)

May 31 from noon to 6 p.m.



from The Kehila Kedosha Janina website:

“Kehila Kedosha Janina was first organized in 1906 by Greek-speaking Romaniote Jews from the city of Ioannina in northwestern Greece. In the early twentieth century there were hundreds of other synagogues on the Lower East Side that mostly served Ashkenazi Yiddish-speaking Jews or Sephardic Spanish-speaking Jews. Needing a place of their own where they could preserve their unique traditions, customs, liturgy and language, property was purchased at 280 Broome Street, and the congregation opened its doors to worship at its current location in 1927. For the past 88 years KKJ has served the Romaniote community on the Lower East Side and, after the closing of nearby Sephardic synagogues, many of the remaining neighborhood Sephardim. In 1997, a Museum was created in the women’s gallery to tell the story of this distinct community to a world that knew so little about them. Today KKJ is proud to be one of only a handful of active synagogues that remain on the Lower East Side.” 

Kosher Mediterranean food

Live music

Outdoor market (with local vendors  Yonah Schimmel Knish Bakery  the Pickle Guys

The Museum at Eldridge Street and the Lower East Side Tenement Museum will have activities for children.





From DNAinfo

For other street fairs and parades in the Lower East Side and East Village this month see DNA article for links:

St. George’s Ukrainian Festival, May 15-17. The annual fair hosted by St. George Ukrainian Catholic Church: traditional foods and dances, as well as music and artwork.

Dance Parade and Festival, May 16. Tens of thousands of dancers are expected to shimmy, shake and sashay from Union Square to Tompkins Square Park in the ninth annual Dance Parade and Festival. 

The Loisaida Festival, May 24. The three-day festival’s main event, an outdoor fair and parade on Avenue C that pays tribute to the neighborhood’s Latino history, will include live music, theatrical events and kid-friendly activities.

IDEAS CITY Festival, May 30. After two days of lectures, panel discussions and art events, the New Museum’s IDEAS CITY Festival will cap its event with a free outdoor street fair featuring more than 100 cultural and community groups. Highlights of the fair, which will take place in Sara D. Roosevelt Park and the surrounding area, include a hands-on bacteria-printing workshop and a “Mayan Ball Game Tournament,” which meshes an ancient Mesoamerican sport with street basketball.

Essex Street Market 75th Birthday Block Party, May 30. The historic market will cap its month-long 75th anniversary events and Lower East Side History Month with a block party on Essex Street.

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Pace High School Seniors petition to fund Sara Roosevelt Park!

From the Pace High School Seniors:

Dear New York City Department of Parks & Recreation,

Parks are vital to our city, society, and well being.  They give children safe spaces for play and activities, provide ecosystems for native plants and animals, and help bring communities together.

We, students from PACE High School, want to help to make Sara D. Roosevelt Park a safer, cleaner, and more updated environment for the community.  Sara D. Roosevelt Park is a vibrant park in the Lower East Side of Manhattan in New York City, and stretches from Canal to Houston street.  It is utilized by many schools and cultural organizations in the area. It is also used by sports teams, elderly people in an aerobics class, and families simply enjoying the day often use the track.  This park is a cultural keystone to the Lower East Side and has impeded gentrification.

That said, portions of the park are in disarray.  The track requires fixing, the surface is deteriorating and many people can get hurt by getting caught on it.  Other facilities in the park also could use repairs, including the basketball courts, soccer fields, and the sidewalks.  There also continues to be a rodent problem in the park.

We, the undersigned, are advocating for more funding from the NYC Parks Department to aid in improving this culturally diverse and important park facility.

Sign the petition here!


Read MorePace High School Seniors petition to fund Sara Roosevelt Park!
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