Neighborhood Association of Childs Park


Neighborhood News

Childs Park YMCA Annual Back Pack and School Supply GiveWay

Posted by brojohn47 on August 22, 2015 at 2:00 PM Comments comments (0)

On behalf of myself and the Childs Park Neighborhood Association, I would like to say thank you to Sis Deborah Figgs-Sanders for her outstanding work and service to the community. She is a great friend, mentor and Big Sister to me and I can always count on her.

This video is from the annual Back Pack and School Supply giveaway that she does at the Childs Park YMCA. Sis Deborah, we salute you, your staff and all of the wonderful volunteers that have made this event a huge success year after year. You all continue to provide an excellent example of what we mean when we say we're #‎PuttingNeighborBackInTheHood.



Another great day in the Childs Park Neighborhood.

Posted by brojohn47 on August 20, 2015 at 2:05 PM Comments comments (0)

Another great day in the Childs Park Neighborhood. We would like to thank Pastor Brian K. Brown and the Believing Family of St. Mark Missionary Baptist Church for hosting their annual "Back to School Bash" at the Childs Park Recreation Center.

We had a great time in the Lord while they gave away school supplies, hundreds of back packs and dozens of free haircuts. This is a wonderful example of what we mean when we say we're #‎PuttingNeighborBackInTheHood.




To stay informed or get involved like our page on


Childs Park YMCA hosts summer showcase

Posted by brojohn47 on August 13, 2015 at 1:05 PM Comments comments (0)

BY ALLEN A. BUCHANAN, Staff Writer for The Weekly Challenger

ST. PETERSBURG — Over 260 people packed the Childs Park YMCA (CPY) auditorium to see summer campers “Puttin’ On the Ritz” for their culminating project. The K-8 camp participants experienced cultural as well as educational enrichment during their break from school.

The theme of the showcase was “Celebrate the Positive Summer Camp Experiences Provided to Youth K-8th Grade.” Six, seven and eighth graders under supervision of Regina Cooper from the Harbordale YMCA came to perform alongside the Kindergarteners through fifth graders at CPY under the supervision of Deborah Figgs-Sanders talented staff.

Both groups thrilled the audience with an hour of song, creative dance, step and recital performances.

The dance routines by both groups of youngsters really stirred the crowd. Another highlight was the children’s individually reciting of biographies by famous black intellectuals, such as Langston Hughes, Zora Neale Hurston and Maya Angelou.

During the CPY camp, youngsters engage in a variety of activities such as daily devotion, gardening, karate, Girl Scouts, creative dance, Kids Fit, visual arts and line dancing exercise. In addition to enrichment activities, they participated in four to five hours daily of academic study including Summer Care provided by the United Way and weekly Reading Circle provided by the St. Petersburg Library Systems.

At the end of the program, three children representing the CYP showed their appreciation and gratitude to Figgs-Sanders by presenting her with an Edibles Arrangement basket of fruit and a large silver balloon. Figgs-Sanders in turn thanked her staff by calling them up one-by-one and presenting each one with a gift.

CPY features a fully functional state-of-the art computer lab and staffed library. For more information on the variety of services featured at the center, Deborah Figgs-Sanders can be reached at (727) 209-9622.

Childs Park community lab officially opens

Posted by brojohn47 on February 27, 2015 at 12:45 AM Comments comments (0)

BY FRANK DROUZAS, Staff Writer for The Weekly Challenger

ST. PETERSBURG — Childs Park Recreation and Fitness Center at 4301 13th Ave. S., was abuzz Feb. 16 as it held a grand opening for its new computer lab. In partnership with City of St. Pete Parks and Recreation, the nonprofit DreamFaith Foundation provided brand new computers to the center as part of its Dream Big Initiative.


In addition, the DreamFaith Foundation has partnered with the citywide program, St. Pete’s Promise, to kick off its new mentoring program at the center. The mentoring program for youngsters grades four through 12 runs Mon. through Fri., from 3:30 to 7 p.m. after school with adult mentors. The computer lab student hours at Childs Park After School Program also runs from 3:30 – 7 p.m.


The festive event included a raffle for such fun giveaways as Sony headphones and mp4 players, as Deonte Thompson, founder and executive director of the DreamFaith Foundation acted as emcee.


“A few years ago we met with then Mayor Foster at the time and we went in with one question: How can we help?” Thompson said to those on hand.


Thompson, a St. Pete native, explained that although the foundation saw the negative statistics that plagued the south St. Pete community at the time like rising school suspensions and an increasing incarceration rate, the DreamFaith board members—which are almost all from South St. Pete—wanted to focus on a way to “build a bridge.”


“The answer that we got back from the mayor at the time was simple: Focus on the youth,” Thompson said. “Focusing on the next generation—grades four all the way up to 12th—to make sure that when they graduate from high school that they’re equipped to handle the world.”


When Thompson and his fellow board members left that meeting, they didn’t have a crystalized plan, but they had a desire and passion to give back to the community. Amidst that passion and determination the Dream Big Initiative was born.


“It’s about empowerment, it’s about hope, it’s about technology,” Thompson said, describing the DBI.


Thompson added that since we now live in a global economy, young career seekers will have to compete against people from all over the world for jobs, namely in the technological fields. Since he believes that science, technology, engineering and mathematics all figure prominently in the jobs of the future, he wanted to provide young people and adults with easy access to computers.


“That’s how the whole computer lab concept came about,” he said.


Access to hope was another key component of the DBI, Thompson said. That’s how the mentoring program came about.


“The goal is for every kid who wants a mentor, they have access to one and they get a mentor,” Thompson declared.


Thomas “Jet” Jackson, who has worked for the city for more than 50 years and recently had a building named after him, offered copious thanks to the foundation for its efforts.


“I want to thank the Dreamfaith Foundation for giving back to the community,” Jackson said. “There is hope and there is help, and you’ve given that help.”


Councilman Wengay Newton recalled some of the rough times he had as a youth growing up in a single-parent household, and encouraged the young people on hand to grasp any opportunities for a bright, productive future and take advantage of available resources.


“We don’t know which one of you guys are going to end up being the next president,” Newton stated, “or the next senator, or the next congressman, or the next mayor, or the next councilman, the next police officer, the next firefighter, the next park and rec manager. No one knows. But we have got to make sure we give you guys every opportunity—not a guarantee, not an entitlement—it’s an opportunity. And opportunities are what you make of them.”


Nikki Gaskin-Capehart, director of Urban Affairs at the city, praised the foundation’s new contribution to Childs Park.


“We are so grateful to you and your vision for stepping up and doing something,” she said. “We want to make sure that we support you as you support these children and these students, and anything that we can continue to do as a community. Let’s wrap ourselves around them!”


Gaskin-Capehart stressed the importance of mentors in young people’s lives and noted the positive impact that professional African-American women had on her when she was growing up.


“I just want you to know that there are opportunities for you and there are people who care about you,” she pointed out, “and just because you don’t have it necessarily in your household doesn’t mean that it’s not out there for you to get.”


Addressing the members of the community at the center directly, Thompson said: “Why are we all here? It is simply because you matter. We are here for you, and we want to be available for you.”


To reach Frank Drouzas, email [email protected]

Preparing for Greatness Part II New Years Back to School Supplies Giveaway

Posted by brojohn47 on September 1, 2012 at 9:05 AM Comments comments (0)

From our Friends at The Childs Park YMCA...

Hi and how are you?

Would you please assist me overthe Labor Day Weekend? If you are out & about and run across schoolsupplies, please think about the smiles of the children wanting toreceive school supplies on January 5th during the Preparing for Greatness Part II New Years Back to School Supplies Giveaway.  Much of the supplies will be removed from stores' shelves to make room for seasonal products, so we need to buy now.

Your donations are also appreciated. The goal is to provide another 500 back packs and supplies, but I need your help.

An educator told me that after the holidays they often spend personaldollars to assist with their students' schools supplies. I smiledbecause it is so true that parents purchase schools supplies in Augustand expect them to last all year. So let's support our teachers byassisting some children return to school with supplies and starting theNew Year prepared for Greatness!

Take care and thank you in advance for your donations. 


Deborah D. Figgs-SandersExecutive

Director YMCA of Greater St. Petersburg

Childs Park YMCA691 43rd Street South

St. Petersburg, FL 33711


727.209.0373 Fax