Press release submitted by Watertown Economic Development Coalition|
Too all citizens of Watertown, the entire City of East Moline and the Greater Quad City Area communities:
The Watertown Economic Development Coalition Steering Committee cordially invites interested citizens to bring their hopes, dreams and constructive ideas to its first Community Town Meeting. The meeting will be held at the United Auto Workers Union Hall, 630 Martin Luther King Drive East Moline, (UAW Local 865) Thursday May 17, 2012 at 6:00 p.m. for the following purpose:
1. To inform interested citizens of our endeavor to build a Community Center in the Watertown District of East Moline.
2. To interest citizens at this first community meeting to join and support the Steering Committee's efforts.
3. To search for interested citizens to serve as Board Members to help direct this effort.
4. Encourage community members to claim this community.
5. Plan and assist with the development of this community.
6. To encourage citizen support for the long haul.
WATERTOWN COMMUNITY EMPOWERMENT COALITION
Mission Statement: To create, provide or promote an environment that draws upon the resources of the community to empower and enhance opportunity through assistance in education, life services, and healthy activities for the welfare of its members.
The Watertown Community Empowerment Coalition WCEC) was formed to address a pressing need for activities and access to social services for citizens in the Watertown Neighborhood in the City of East Moline, and to create an environment to address the need for:
- Educational enhancement
- Economic growth
- Social opportunity
- Arts & Recreational activities
- Spiritual nourishment
The population of the Watertown neighborhood is approximately 4100. People of color comprise 58% of this population. Forty percent of this population falls in the low to moderate income standards. The area has a declining number of owner occupied housing, which indicates an increased number of rental housing. Only about 12 new homes have been constructed in the past seven years and fifty percent of these were Habitat for Humanity construction.
Surrounded by signs of diminishing industry, this neighborhood is a sociological donut devoid of schools, services and lacking opportunities for essential participatory commercial access, and a strained or minimal relationship with government services, this target area struggles to regain a sense of community. Building toward a positive citizen impact through access and participation WCEC proposes to establish a community center and partner with existing service agencies, where possible, to provide needed services within the target area.
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