April 2018 Neighbor Spotlight- Lisa Richmond

April 2018 Neighbor Spotlight- Lisa Richmond

What is the name of your neighborhood?

Birchwood Heights

How long have you lived in your neighborhood?

Over 20 years.

Tell us about your neighborhood.

My neighborhood is family-oriented, focused on helping and supporting each other.  I have lived here since elementary school, so I have grown up with my friends and our kids have become best friends.  There were about eight pioneer families that worked to make sure we were close knit and we grew as a neighborhood from there.  Ann Atwater was my mentor and nurtured me as the secretary of the HOA, so that I could grow as a leader. The community members have also really supported me in all of the neighborhood work.

What successes have your neighborhood and community had?

We have accomplished a lot.  We were all renters with DHA and became homeowners of the properties we were renting in the early 80s.  For over five years, we have successfully run a community center with only volunteers.  Through our volunteers, we have:

  • Built a community park
  • Planted a community garden
  • Beautified our entrance ways
  • Hosted exercise classes
  • Offered mentoring through James Way Mentoring
  • Provided classes
  • Held a food pantry
  • Hosted church services on Sunday.

What are some concerns that you still have in your neighborhood?

We always can use more volunteers because they run everything.  We love new ideas and want to keep volunteers interested and involved. 

We are also concerned about dumping at the entrances.

In addition, across the city, we need to get back to families supporting each other and being a village.

What advice would you give to other community members?

Show some concern for where you live and for others. Show appreciation for people.

Do you have any upcoming opportunities for other people to get involved?

Get involved with summer programming, gardening and youth mentoring at the Birchwood Heights community Center.   

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