Keep Calm and Be Healthy

Saturday, October 19, 2013 the Mary Mitchell Family and Youth Center hosted a community health walk around the neighborhood and Crotona Park.

It started 9:30 in the morning, supplying the supporters with a light breakfast and ended at 12 noon with a delicious lunch.

Even though it was staged as a health walk, it was more than that. It was a community gathering and information session.  Before we set out to walk, the director of the Mary Mitchell Family and Youth Center, Heidi Hynes, welcomed the sponsoring organizations that came to support the Mary Mitchell:

  • Mothers on the Move
  • University Neighborhood Housing Program
  • the POINT
  • Concourse House
  • Mt. Hope Housing Co.
  • Isis Community Circle
  • Bronx Health Reach
  • Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition
  • Montefiore CATCH Program
  • BLK Projek
  • Fordham University Dorothy Day Center
  • Groundswell
  • La Familia Verde
  • Green Worker Cooperatives
  • DPHO
  • TANIMA Dance

Together as a community we marched around the neighborhood chanting songs and holding signs promoting fair economy,physical activity, access to fresh food,  school health, good housing, a clean environment and individual wellness.

Health Walk

Mosaic Pizza at the Point

The Point


In July, we took the Summer Campers to the Community Center on 940 Garrison Avenue in the Bronx, also known as the Point.

There they met Danny, one of the instructors and made pizza.

Some of them ate their pizza straight out of the oven, but most of them decided to save their pizza for their parents against my will. I kept asking them to just eat it! When we walked outside, the pizza that they tried to save fell from my hands and they were upset with me.

Jerry, the Newsstand Man

Over the summer, I worked at International Center of Photography at the Point as an assistant teacher.

One of my students, Charles, came to class one day and told us about a Newsstand Man he had photographed. He interviewed him about his life and well-being. The following story is Jerry’s (the Newsstand Man) story told to Charles:

Jerry Delakas is an honest, hardworking man who has been running the Astor Place Newsstand for the last 24 years, and is now facing eviction. Jerry has very much become a fixture of the neighborhood. He is a friendly and familiar face to residents, tourists, and schoolchildren. What Jerry enjoys most is watching the the world go by as he lovingly attends to his post.

A native of Cephallonia, Greece, Jerry’s work as a merchant seaman brought him to the US in the 70s. He attained his “American Dream” by being his own boss running the newsstand. In over 20 years of work, he’s been witness to the striking transformation of the city and of his neighborhood in particular.

But, Jerry’s days are numbered….

The city is attempting to evict him from his stand because he doesn’t have the required license. The previous owner of the license had allowed Jerry to run the stand and left it to him in her Will. Now, the City of New York stipulates that their arrangement is invalid, and refuses to grant Jerry the license to be proprietor of his own stand.

At 64 years old Jerry is in a precarious position. He is now relying on the support of the community: friends, neighbors, concerned citizens of the world and activists alike.

We can save Jerry with the support of people like you!

To view pictures of Jerry visit Charles flicker here.



Bambi, a photographer and instructor for the International Center of Photography shows off silk-screen art done by a Japanese artist in Brooklyn. I thought it was extra cool that she got the print done on a plaid shirt rather than a plain white tee.

If you look at the whale closely, there is a shape of a man.

Rocking the Boat at Riverside Park

So, I am interning with the International Center of Photography at the Point.  Every Thursday so far we went on trips to allow the children to explore the community with their cameras.

This allows me to see more parts of the Bronx I never knew existed like the Rocking the Boat program at Riverside Park. 

When we entered  riverside park, we saw a small universe with big people doing big things!

When we  first entered the park, we saw a boat safe with beautiful graffiti all over the walls. Lined up were small trailers with boats in them. As we ventured further into the park we saw about 16 or more teens working on a boat.

I was a little surprised, to tell you the truth, because I didn’t know the Bronx had boats in her! (Really, it’s hard to find a person in the ‘hood that likes to swim much less paddle a boat). I  felt proud of my Bronx.

While the children were taking pictures, Adam, the director of Rocking the Boat, told us that the teens make the boats themselves then ride in them!! I also learned that this program hire the teens! (How cool is that?)

I aim to visit Riverside park again before the summer ends…I want to get in a boat!