Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Organize to Revitalize!

Some Kensington neighbors and I were lucky enough to meet with Mark Dicus of CAMBA today to discuss our side of the park’s issues and solutions. Besides working for CAMDA Mark is the president of an organization he helped found in his ‘hood, Prospect Lefferts Gardens, called Prospect Lefferts United for Service (PLUS). Mark was a wealth of information about how to get a grant for store front improvement, deal with graffiti through city agencies and organizations like Publicolor as well as promote greener environments with the help of New York Cares. We also discussed BIDs and alternatives for revitalization of business along Church Ave in our stretch (from Ocean Parkway to McDonald Ave.). Mark's suggestions were simple, like organizing a graffiti removal day that would get us access to business owners by providing them with free removal (we’d be the muscle and have the city provide the paint). He also reaffirmed what we already knew which is frequent and become apart of organizations in the area like Albemarle Neighborhood Association (ANA). The meeting was helpful, informative and a chance for a few of us to organize. We left with a plan to meet in the next two weeks to discuss our main goals and focus. Mark also extended his help through CAMBA when these goals are determined. All and all a good start!