New group advocates for Bayview-Hunters Point parks

February 25, 2011 6:54:27 PM PST
San Francisco is a city filled with neighborhood parks. Some are more clean and vibrant than others. A lot of that is due to volunteers. Saturday, a new effort kicks off in a community that desperately needs the help.

There are 225 neighborhood parks in San Francisco and many have been adopted by community groups. But there are 11 in Bayview-Hunters Point that no one has looked out for, until now.

"Many of the parks we come to admire have great stewards that advocate constantly, go to parks meetings, pressure parks commissioners," Geoffrea Morris said.

Morris is the force behind Parks 94124. She and three other women who live in the zip code have started an advocacy group to revitalize their neighborhood parks.

"They have been kind of neglected, usership has been down so it hasn't been a priority for the city or for people either," Maya Rodgers said.

Parks 94124 envisions organizing cleanup efforts, and raising money for playground equipment and community programs. According to Parks 94124, there are more than 11,000 children under the age of 10 in District 10, most in Bayview-Hunters Point.

"It's part of the bigger picture here, part of what we're trying to do to bring a better quality of life to our community and for our children," Lena Miller said.

Most community groups focus on one park. With the expertise of the influential Neighborhood Parks Council, these women are tackling nearly a dozen.

"They are absolutely such a vision for neighborhood parks, community driven in San Francisco right now," Neighborhood Parks Council spokesperson Meredith Thomas said.

It is expected there will be a multi-million dollar park bond issue in 2013. Parks 94124 will be pushing for a piece of that pie.

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