Mary McLeod Bethune School

Mary McLeod Bethune School featured image

In the Hunting Park neighborhood of North Philadelphia, residents have few safe, inviting places to gather outside and enjoy all the benefits of close-to-home nature. Homicide and crime rates are among the highest in the city. Vacant, deteriorating buildings line many streets, many outdoors spaces feel unsafe. Residents suffer disproportionate challenges to live healthy lives due to a lack of green space, social isolation, and increased risks for illnesses. 

We’ve teamed up with the staff and students at Bethune to create a new, green, community space that everyone can enjoy. Using our signature participatory design process, students will work together and collaborate with the school’s neighbors to reimagine the barren, asphalt space. Together, we will create a vibrant community hub, open to the public after school hours and designed to meet the needs of neighbors as well as students. That’s a big deal for the 9,400 people who live within a 10-minute walk of Bethune –87% of whom live in low-income households—with no other close-to-home green spaces to gather. 

We are proud to be partnering with North10 on the project, a local nonprofit organization committed to Hunting Park and East Tioga. The new schoolyard will embody the very core of Bethune’s mission: to allow all children a place to learn, play, and dream.

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