Jacque Eaves is pleased with how the first "Friends of Sacramento" Open House turned out. Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves, and more importantly, her two goals were met.
The first, “to assist our ongoing efforts to strengthen our community through partnerships with local government, schools, businesses, community members and faith-based organizations” was met by all of the local leaders who came to the open house. Among them were Mount Vernon District Supervisor Gerry Hyland; Captain Larry Moser, outgoing commander of the Mount Vernon District Station; Lt. Mike Dittmer, Assistant Commander; Mount Vernon District Station; Fairfax County Police Captain Mike Kline, incoming commander of the Mount Vernon District Station, Ken Disselkoen, Area I Manager for the Department of Human Services; Holly Franz, Division Supervisor from CRS, Community Centers; Sarah Allen from Dept. of Systems Management; Anthony Hill; Kevin Baldasarri and Cheri Zeman, executive director of United Community Ministries (UCM). Several members of the Mount Vernon-Lee Chamber of Commerce came by, as did other community members.
Eaves' second goal, “to gather community input for future ideas for SNC” was met by the surveys that were completed by both community leaders and local residents. Several of the center’s volunteers were on hand, including Florence Foster, who does family advocacy and crisis intervention work.
Eaves gave visitors a tour of the center. There is a computer lab which was set up by The Computer Learning Centers Partnership, a cooperative effort run by the Fairfax County of Partnerships; a group room; and a community room. The center also includes a place to do homework, a place for dance teams and playgroups to meet, a place for children to play games and more.
Eaves said that the center has a wish list and are looking for items like a new television and fish tank. They also need someone to tune the piano, which was donated by the Washington Community Church, and fix the arcade game.
Eaves is looking to partner with local business and community groups, and said, “Our goal is to have self-serving programs.”
Julie Ellis, director of Hollin Hall Senior Center, has been assisting with community outreach at SNC the past few months and said that the center is planning to hold a series of workshops. They will include a Job Readiness Workshop presented by UCM's Workforce Development; "Be Tobacco Free" — a program for Teens presented by Community and Recreation Services; and Overtime/ Girl Power — Programs for Boys and Girls. Ellis also said that once a month Community "Block Parties" receive input from community members by actually going out into their community and setting up 'Meet and Greet" and information tables. In addition, a KoffeeHaus is held once a month on a Saturday.
“We are in the planning stages as we speak, but Jackie is working hard on coordinating a MLK Jr. Day, Youth Violence Prevention Program on Monday, Jan. 17 at SNC. Times are being determined now,” Ellis said.
Sacramento Neighborhood Center is located at 8792-E Sacramento Drive. For more information, call 703-619-2964.