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Brownsville Partnership and MAS Host First Annual HOPE Summit

The Brownsville Partnership, in conjunction with the Municipal Art Society, will host the first annual Brownsville HOPE Summit on neighborhood safety and community development.

The Summit will take place on Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Van Dyke Community Center located at 392 Blake Ave, Brooklyn, following a kickoff event with elected officials on Feb. 22 at Howard Houses Community Center.

The Summit launches a yearlong drive to mobilize residents and local and citywide institutions to work collectively to make Brownsville a safer, healthier and more prosperous neighborhood. The initiative has been spearheaded by the Brownsville Partnership’s Intergenerational Advisory Council, which is made up of longtime Brownsville residents who work to solve the neighborhood’s challenges using local ideas and action. A priority for the group has been working to improve public safety and quality of life through improvements to the physical environment.

The Summit is funded by Atlantic Philanthropies through Age Friendly Cities – USA, of which the Brownsville Partnership is one of five national grantees.

At the Summit, residents armed with markers, flip charts, maps and photographs will identify underutilized neighborhood resources, troubled spots and opportunities for short term improvements and long term development to help sculpt the future of their neighborhood. The day will lay out priorities and implementation plans to guide action over the course of the year.

The event will honor the legacy of Greg Jackson, the late founding director of the Brownsville Partnership, and a champion of community- led change efforts.

The summit builds upon the work of the Brownsville Partnership, a growing network of resident, city and not for profit partners, led by Community Solutions, which practices a collective approach to community development. Since its inception in 2008, the Partnership has brought together residents and more than 20 organizations to improve Brownsville.  Partners have created eight new early childhood and afterschool programs; prevented more than 500 evictions, established three farmers markets run by neighborhood youth, brought bike infrastructure, walking trails and other health-promoting initiatives to the neighborhood, established an alternative to incarceration programs, and offered financial literacy training and job placement and training.