Revitalizing a neighborhood through growth and hope

NewsWorks reached out to a few key community/civic leaders in Roxborough, Manayunk and East Falls and asked them to tell us what their new year’s resolution is for their neighborhood. Here’s a response from Drew Bantly, president of the Wissahickon Neighbors Civic Assoication. 

In projecting the upcoming new year for the Wissahickon Neighbors Civic Association, we focus on bringing our community closer together through personal networking among all those who live here.

We have a very diverse neighborhood made up of residents who have lived here all their lives, young professionals hopefully making Philadelphia their permanent home and college students that are balancing school and living responsibly within a residential community.

All members of our neighborhood have something to offer or convey and I hope we utilize, cultivate and motivate through our knowledge of their concerns/needs more and more as we develop.

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Early in 2010, the association was so fortunately awarded money from the city to revitalize our local city park to make it safer and up to date.

As Phase one is to begin this Spring, this project has already brought much of the community together and I hope as this revitalization continues in the park it carries over throughout the rest of the neighborhood.

As our communication venues/meetings enlighten the neighborhood we will address more specific programs that affect them directly i.e Tree Tenders (a PHS beautification project) as an example.

This new communication process will be a hands on “we are a committed group” making a difference approach which will gently guide the new network of participants into an open responsible neighborhood community. Goal one is to be closer to bringing in positive changes and avoiding the negative stigma associated with growth through an apathetic/transient population.

Hope always springs eternal…..sounds quotable to me!

On a personal note, this organization has taught me more about patience, due process and a need to listen closely to what concerns can materialize and what concerns need to develop.

It has been well worth the time and a little devotion to making this little niche of a neighborhood a very close knit community.

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