Nicetown is a neighborhood of North Philadelphia that has lots of people from various organizations working to develop the area as a community. With the help of the Nicetown Community Development Corporation (CDC), these five places are home to some emerging resources that make the area a better place to live for people and families. Residents hope these shared spaces can “bring the nice back into The Town.”
1. Nicetown CDC Community Center
Here, Nicetown CDC CEO Majeedah Rashid and her dedicated staff work to provide Nicetown residents with public safety, employment opportunities and affordable housing. The community center has a computer lab and fax/copying for residents who are looking for jobs. It’s also a place where people can get grants to pay their utility bills, sponsored by the Energy Coordinating Agency. In a neighborhood where one-third of the population is below the poverty line, places like this are invaluable.
2. Nicetown Park
With the help of Councilwoman Cindy Bass (formerly of Philadelphia’s Parks and Recreation Department), redevelopment plans are in place to bring a performance space and a skate park to Nicetown Park. The open, grassy area and playground already host Nicetown CDC’s annual Give Back Festival, a two-day event in August that brings art and culture to residents of all ages.
3. Hot Pot Carribean Restaurant
Owner Gregg Clennon serves up sizzling home cooked meals at Hot Pot seven days a week. But his establishment also serves as a regular meeting place for block captains to discuss community issues and plan events. Hot Pot gives back generously to its community, doling out books and pencils at an annual back-to-school barbecue.
4) Temple Physicians at Nicetown
When the Nicetown CDC built Nicetown Court, a mixed-use affordable housing center, it vigorously lobbied to bring Temple Physicians into the building. The hard work paid off, as Dr. Delana Wardlaw and her staff have won awards in community development, according to Majeedah Rashid. This clinic offers affordable health services to both children and adults at a convenient, central location.
5. Shane Victorino Nicetown Boys and Girls Club
For $5 a year, children from ages 7 to 18 have access to a wide range of after-school activities at the Boys and Girls Club’s Clarissa Street location. The activities include athletic facilities, arts and crafts, academic support and summer camps. It was also one of the first locations in the Boys and Girls organization to offer its services to girls. This space isn’t just essential for supporting the youth of the community; it’s also a huge lift to parents that need childcare during the after-school work hours.