Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams Pledges $5K to 211 Ainslie
Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams visited 211 Ainslie, which houses Swinging Sixties Senior Center, Small World Day Care, and serves as the meeting home of Community Board 1. He greeted the seniors, children, and Community Board 1 leadership, and emphasized his commitment to the center that serves as heart of the North Brooklyn community. The Small World children sang songs of unity and winter in celebration of Black History Month and the BBP’s visit.
On addressing the crowd, Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams remarked upon the valuable learning opportunity that is at this center by having seniors and children in such close proximity. He proposed a gift of $5K from his discretionary spending budget to go toward establishing intergenerational centric literacy-based educational programming where Swinging Sixties Seniors would mentor Small World children.
“What you can teach our children speaks volumes,” said Borough President Adams in his remarks at the senior center. “I learned so much from my grandmother and my mother is still today, when times are difficult, the person to whom I speak. Many of these young people can learn so much from you about how to continue to grow and become very productive adults. This center can become a model that we should duplicate throughout this city. Wherever we have our school and pre-k programs, we should have our elders there to complement the instruction. The greatest form of instruction is life experience, and we cannot buy the life experience that these elders have.”
Furthermore BBP Adams was thanked by seniors and CB 1 members for his commitment of $1M that will go to purchase the property.
For over 40 years 211 Ainslie St. has housed both Small World Child Care and the Swinging Sixties Senior Centers, which provide needed free and low-cost programming. It also serves as North Brooklyn’s Town Hall, hosting Community Board 1 and major community meetings. Its future has been threatened because its new landlord drastically hiked up the rent.
On July 28, 2015 Judge Johnny Lee Baynes said in the court hearing that he would advocate for a deed restriction to prevent the City or any other landlord from possibly removing this important community service from the building.
Community leaders and elected officials are united in determination to move the property to community ownership. Councilman Antonio Reynoso has committed millions to purchase the center and was arrested at a demonstration on March 24th, which helped get City Hall’s attention. Assemblyman Joseph Lentol supported their effort and secured legislative approval of Eminent Domain. The campaign to support the center is broadly supported by all elected officials.