Vital to a vibrant city are strong neighborhoods, and critical to strong neighborhoods are engaged neighbors. That’s what makes the annual Block Captain Rally more than a fluff and puff event. It’s an opportunity to re-energize local leaders who help to cultivate harmony and respect, block by block — and why PCHR was among the many present on Saturday.
This year’s event took place at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, where more than 1,200 block captains and junior block captains, along with scores of everyday residents, converged to shake off the winter blahs and prep for a new season. And PCHR helped to arm those engaged civic leaders with more details on viable information such as the Fair Housing Ordinance and the Ban the Box law, for starters.
“There were so many people present, and they were really engaged,” said Tierra Thompson, a member of the PCHR community relations team. “There was a lot of positive energy. And people were really interested in the information we were sharing.”
Her teammate, Bunrath Math, agreed.
“The PCHR table was swamped with block captains and community leaders,” Math said. “They took every pamphlet, every handout about our services. I lost my voice from talking by the end of the day.”
Thompson and Math are part of a six-member team that spends countless hours in neighborhoods across the city, helping to build alliances and diffuse tensions when they arise.
The team counts on committed partners in this cause, and block captains – as well as junior block captains – often are among the keys to success on that front.
PCHR joined the more than 50 organizations on hand Saturday to offer information about building stronger, cleaner communities and improving overall quality of life in Philadelphia.
Between the workshops, speakers, and entertainment, Thompson and Math, helped to strategize with both new and familiar faces during the event, sponsored by the Philadelphia More Beautiful Committee.
“It was definitely a success, because we were educating, directly, the people who need our services the most,” Math said. “And block captains will spread the word.”