Since it's opening, Echo Park has been a beacon for families
desperate to find responsive, humane and comprehensive services for
themselves and their children.
ABC is now embarking on a very special new project to add a unique
rooftop classroom for the infants, toddlers, preschoolers, youth and the
families who participate in Echo Park.
In addition to wonderful playground structures specifically designed
to optimize play for the 120 toddlers and preschoolers in Echo Park’s
Early Childhood Center and a playing field where the toddlers and
preschoolers as well as over 100 school-aged children who participate in
Echo Park’s after school program can play, city children can engage in organized
sports activities and enjoy daily opportunities for physical exercise.
The centerpiece of this rooftop recreation and learning space will be a
large self-sustainable, solar-heated greenhouse.
This greenhouse will add an entire rooftop classroom and laboratory
in which children and their families will grow food and where they will
learn life-long lessons of good nutrition, respect for the Earth, the
dangers of global warming and a responsible relationship with the
planet. It will demonstrate that even the most vulnerable child can be a
world leader and take small steps toward ensuring a healthy future for
At approximately 500 square feet, with its own sprinkler,
filtration system and humidifier, all generated from solar energy, the
greenhouse will be large enough to hold an entire classroom of children.
All of Echo Park’s programs will be able to take
advantage of the rooftop and its resources. Scheduled daily activities
will significantly enhance the curricula of the early childhood programs
as well as the school-aged youth and teen programs.
The water supply will be collected from rain water and redistributed.
Solar heating will make it possible to plant year round and the
greenhouse’s roof will be retractable to take advantage of good weather.
The rooftop greenhouse will provide much needed
access to green space for the children of East Harlem, who will have the
opportunity to plant, grow and harvest their own fruits, vegetables and
herbs as they learn the benefits of a healthy diet and good nutrition.
Some of what is grown in the greenhouse will be used
in the preparation of their lunches and snacks, teaching the children
the valuable lesson of healthy eating and making them active
participants in the production of some of their and their families’
ABC has just been approved as a site to pilot the CookShop curriculum
for preschoolers, a program which has been established to use hands-on
cooking to promote awareness and consumption of plant-based foods in New
York City's low-income communities.
It’s so exciting to imagine our children seeing the stars for the
fist time in a greenhouse classroom at night.
Please help ABC make this dream a reality. Donate online now!
In the field "To designate your donation to a specific program or
fund, please enter the information" please write "Echo Park Rooftop."
Or join us for our
Sweet Treat Benefit on June 26, 2008
Other Ways To Support ABC