Neighborhood Leadership Program Celebrates 22nd Class of Graduates

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The City of Long Beach on Saturday celebrated the graduation of the Neighborhood Leadership Program class of 2015, a group of 32 grassroots residents who have been empowered to become better leaders and foster positive change throughout Long Beach neighborhoods.

“Congratulations to all the graduates of our Neighborhood Leadership Program,” said Mayor Robert Garcia. “Resident leaders play an important role in strengthening our neighborhoods, and they make a huge, positive difference in our City.”

The Neighborhood Leadership Program, offered by the Development Services Neighborhood Services Bureau, is a complimentary five-month multilingual program that provides residents with the skills, knowledge, and resources needed to tackle existing community challenges and enhance the quality of life of Long Beach neighborhoods.

“I want to congratulate and thank these passionate and accomplished neighborhood leaders for their dedication to serving our community,” said Councilwoman Lena Gonzalez. “This important program provides residents with the tools needed to effectively advocate for change and transform our neighborhoods.”

The Neighborhood Leadership Program strives to assist candidates in expanding communication skills, identifying partnership opportunities, applying for grants, and completing various community projects.

“The Neighborhood Leadership Program Class of 2015’s commitment to becoming resourceful and effective community leaders is truly admirable,” said Councilmember Roberto Uranga. “I am especially grateful that this year’s class focused on the Santa Fe Avenue corridor, providing additional programming and educational opportunities to the residents of West Long Beach.”

This year’s group helped to successfully coordinate a number of community outreach events, including:

  • A “Sustain Santa Fe” Expo held at the Long Beach Organic Mary Molina Garden, where residents learned how to compost, conserve and recycle water, start a vegetable garden, reuse shredded paper and junk mail, and register for plots in the community garden.
  • A Technology Fair hosted at James A. Garfield Elementary School that connected residents to resourceful mobile apps, including City of Long Beach apps to access services and report neighborhood problems.
  • A “Clean & Connect” Resource Fair held at Admiral Kidd Park, where residents received useful information about resources available to maintain clean neighborhoods, participated in an E-waste recycling collection, and completed a neighborhood clean-up.
  • A Safe Long Beach Public Safety Fair also hosted at Admiral Kidd Park, with more than 20 public safety information booths, including interactive displays, CPR demonstrations, free child ID bracelets, first aid kits, and more.

The class of 2015 graduation ceremony was held at Cesar E. Chavez Park. The Neighborhood Leadership Program was established in 1992, and has more than 600 graduates to date.

Funding for this year’s program was provided by the Tesoro Foundation, which presented $10,000 to support community projects along the Santa Fe corridor. The Neighborhood Leadership Program is also funded by the Federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program.

Safe Long Beach, the City’s Violence Prevention Plan, addresses a broad safety agenda aimed at reducing all forms of violence, including domestic abuse, child abuse, elder abuse, hate crimes, bullying, gang violence, and violent crime. Adopted by the City Council in May 2014, the Plan draws upon the City’s many existing assets to target violence at its root and attain the goal of building a safer Long Beach by 2020.

For additional information about the Neighborhood Leadership Program, call 562.570.3817 or e-mail

To learn more about Safe Long Beach, go to

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