Really? A Rally to SAVE the Mary Mitchell Center?

I am greatly disappointed in the city of New York. I am disappointed in the mayor and all of those at the top who seem to be doing everything in their power to tear down the Bronx.

Friday, September 24th at 4pm is a rally to save Mary Mitchell family and Youth Center.

The Bronx is filled with homes in every place to suit to the needs of others who live throughout the city and there is barely any green space for the children to enjoy proper play grounds thus they are on top of school roofs and left on the street. There are programs for children in the Bronx but not enough for the city to decide to close down Mary Mitchell for money.

Mary Mitchell herself had a lease on a City owned property at 2007 Mapes in the mid-1970s. The building, however, was destroyed in a fire and Mary Mitchell  ran a PLAY Street on Mapes and youth activities out of her house until her death in 1993.  Since then community members like Astin Jacobo took up the cause of creating a community center in her honor. In 1997, the center opened and $180,000 that had been allocated for operations was kept by the City. For three years the Mary Mitchell Center (MMC) board of neighborhood residents ran the facility and expanded programs.

In 2000, the City transferred the lease to the Department of Education against the will of the community and said it was ‘in our best interest’. They promised that the MMC would be able to use the Center after school and on weekends.

In July 2010, claiming the City is poor and unable to afford to keep it open, the Department of Education made it clear that they would not honor their agreement and after 10 years, without giving the Center time to renegotiate with the City, they have LOCKED us out of our own building.

You would think kicking people out of Manhattan and forcing them to live in the Bronx was enough but now the city wants to come into the Bronx and tear down those things that are helping the future leaders of the Bronx by closing the center. In 2009 there was a shooting next door to the center and one of the stray bullets could have hit any of our students had not if been for the sheltering of the center. Not to mention their daily problems that they have to face at home and school. We all know the DOE could be focusing on the schools to improve them rather than trying to close down the MMC. Why wear and tear the community down instead of lifting it up?

The children at MM receive constant mentoring and aspiring direction from the staff and know that they are loved.

We must save  Mary Mitchell. You. Me. Must SAVE MARY MITCHELL

Mary Mitchell

words in italics by Heidi Hynes, contact her at 917-402-4129

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