El Puente Earth Day Celebration
by Andrew Shilling
Apr 24, 2013 | 794 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Danny Rivera and children from the Taylor Wythe leadership community center.
Danny Rivera and children from the Taylor Wythe leadership community center.
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El Puente Green Light District held their third annual Earth Day celebration at the Espiritu Terra Community Garden at South 2nd Street and Reobling Avenue on Tuesday to teach children about the importance of health and wellness and what it means to become environmentally aware.

The Green Light District is an initiative to build civic engagement, education and health awareness among children in the Southside neighborhood of Williamsburg.

Nearly 100 kids and supervisors from El Puente leadership and afterschool beacon programs in and around South Williamsburg met at the park to learn about the environment and to simply enjoy the outdoors.

“Most folks sort of inherently know what it means to live sustainable, it makes sense, so we want to celebrate that experience and that knowledge,” said Anusha Venkataraman, El Puente’s Green Light District director. “The young people need the opportunity to build their confidence.”

Danny Rivera has been involved with El Puente for the last 12 years, and now supervises children in the program.

Children can play soccer and participate in breakdance classes, as well as join in art classes after school.

“This should not only inspire the kids, but the facilitators as well,” Rivera said.

Gabrielle Alvarez, Health and Wellness coordinator with the Green Light District, was also there with the Youth Health Explorers Project, a group of students who were video-mapping the area’s shopping and eating habits.

They filmed short video packages of South Williamsburg residents with their tablet PCs at the event to investigate where the community shops for groceries.

“Hopefully they’re going to have a really nice product at the end and have some nice awareness in terms of food and food justice,” Alvarez said.

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