- Organization Name:A Better Jamaica
- Address:114-73 178th Street
Jamaica, NY 11434
A Better Jamaica, Inc. is a tax-exempt nonprofit community service organization that engages in activities designed to strengthen a set of southeast Queens, New York neighborhoods known collectively as Jamaica.
Comprised of Community Boards 12 and 13, Jamaica has a total population of 419,886. Of Jamaica’s residents, 74% are 18 or over and 26% are younger than 18. Though socio-economically diverse, 28% of Jamaica residents receive some form of income support. 64% of Jamaica residents are Black Nonhispanic; 12% are Hispanic; 10% are White Nonhispanic; 7% are Asian; and 7% are Other.
32% of U.S. households with children under 18 are headed by single parents. In Jamaica as a whole, single parents head 43% of households with children under 18. Single parents in the Community Board 12 part of Jamaica head 51% of households with children under 18.
Intact families not only provide greater resources for children’s economic, time and social needs, but allow parents to dedicate time to meet community infrastructure needs by serving as coaches, scout leaders, and organizers of other community based activities. Communities in which the incidence of single parent headed households is high, too often exist without some of these infrastructure needs being met. A Better Jamaica endeavors to serve some of these unmet needs.
In the summer of 2006 Greg Mays, A Better Jamaica's founder, attended a screening of The Wizard of Oz in Forest Park -- across town from where he lived. That thoroughly enjoyed experience prompted the question: Why must I travel across town to have such an enjoyable experience? The people in my neighborhood deserve the same opportunity to enjoy a community building experience.
That experience led to the creation of A Better Jamaica and its first project: Family Movies in the Park. Today, A Better Jamaica has five program offerings: Family Movies in the Park; Jamaica311.com; Classic Film Fridays; Jamaica Solutions; and, Jamaica Reads.
A Better Jamaica’s Family Movies in the Park is a summer series that presents free family friendly movies (rated PG-13 or below) in four of Jamaica’s neighborhood parks – Cambria, Baisley Pond, Brookville, and St. Albans. The films are exhibited on a 25’ inflatable screen and begin at dusk – between 8:00 pm and 8:30 pm. Films in the 2007 line-up included Happy Feet, and Pride. Films in the 2008 line-up included The Wiz, and The Great Debaters. Films in the 2009 line-up included: Akeelah and the Bee, Chicken Run; Claudine; and The Karate Kid. Films in the 2010 line-up included: Shrek, The Wizard of Oz, Love & Basketball, Sherlock Holmes, Happy Feet, Pride, Jaws, and Lemony Snicket. Sixteen movies will be shown in the Summer of 2011.
Strong communities provide multiple means by which information can be disseminated in and throughout them. Increasingly key to the information dissemination mix, is the internet. Jamaica has heretofore lacked a community wide internet based means by which information can be disseminated in and throughout it. A Better Jamaica's Jamica311.com is designed to meet the need of conveniently disseminating information in and throughout the community.
A Better Jamaica’s Classic Film Fridays is a summer series that presents free classic films on Friday evenings in downtown Jamaica’s Rufus King Park. The films are exhibited on a 25’ inflatable screen and begin at dusk -- between 8:00 pm and 8:30 pm. Films in the 2009 Classic “New York” Film Fridays line-up included: The Taking of Pelham 123; Working Girl; Serpico; Moonstruck; and Do the Right Thing. Films in the 2010 Classic “Song/Dance” Film Fridays line-up included: Top Hat; West Side Story; Saturday Night Fever; Purple Rain; and Moulin Rouge. Films likely to be included in the 2011 Classic “Psycho” Film Fridays line-up include: Psycho, Misery, The Shining, The Silence of the Lambs, and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.
A Better Jamaica's Jamaica Solutions is a conference designed to give the leadership of locally based/focused non-profits the opportunity to discuss their efforts and share best practices so that they can individually and collectively better serve their organizational constituents and the community. The first of these annual conferences, Jamaica Solutions 2010, featured leadership roundtables of locally based: youth sports/recreation organizations; arts educating/presenting organizations; and, health advocacy organizations.
In the Fall/Winter of 2010/2011, A Better Jamaica conducted a pilot season of Jamaica Reads. Using active neighborhood seniors from the Allen Cathedral Senior Residence, Jamaica Reads placed 5 seniors in each of two 1st grade classes at P.S. 48 Queens – for three mornings a week from 9:30 am to 10:30 am. These “Senior Reading Buddies” were paired with the five weakest readers in each class with the goal of moving the participating children further along the reading/decoding path than they might otherwise progress. Each of the students was/is at risk of being held over – some for a second time.
- Year established:2007
- Organization type:Grantseeker
- Country of registration:United States
- Tax Determination Letter:Received Determination Letter
- IRS Section:501(c)(3)
- IRS Subsection:None
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