NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ—A block party celebrating the opening of Unity Square Community Center at the corner of Remsen Avenue and Suydam Street featured food, games, and community groups tabling to promote classes and events for children as well as adults.
In an impressive effort of community organizing, a wide variety of city-based groups came together to showcase their services and upcoming events to those who dropped by the once-abandoned firehouse last Friday.
Unity Square was promoting ESL classes, crime watch meetings, workshops about wage theft and tenants rights, and community gardens.
NJ Assemblyman Upendra Chivukula’s staffers Joseph Forte and Sheridan Balmeo were giving away free children’s books as a trial run for future events.
“We have over 1000 books [to give away],” Balmeo said, “we’re planning more events with Unity Square.”
Isaac Benjamin of Enroll America was present to inform the community of health insurance options made available by the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare.
He and his colleagues were handing out information to help those who are not currently insured or know anyone who is not currently insured.
Yesina Medina-Hernandez, of Robert Wood Johnson’s Community Health Programs was promoting free classes held at the RWJUH Fitness and Wellness Center at 100 Kirkpatrick Street.
The workshops range from healthy cooking, health and wellness, and events such as the “Latino Diabetes Wellness and Prevention Project,” every third Saturday of the month.
The New Brunswick Community Farmers market was selling fruit and vegetable plants popular within the Latino community, which can otherwise be very difficult to find.
The New Brunswick Community Farmers Market is held every Wednesday from 11am-3pm in Kilmer Square Park next to Starbuck’s on George Street, as well as Thursdays from 11am-3pm and Saturdays from 10am-3pm at 178 Jones Avenue throughout the summer.
New Brunswick 4-H was also on hand promoting a free upcoming class on robotics for children at the New Brunswick Public Library, July 21 at 6:30 PM.
Charlie is the founder and editor of New Brunswick Today, and the winner of the Awbrey Award for Community-Oriented Local Journalism. He is a proud Rutgers University journalism graduate, a community organizer, and a former independent candidate for mayor of New Brunswick.