Black Positive People : Why This 73-Year-Old Is a Gang's Worst Nightmare

Discussion in 'Black People Doing Positive Things' started by MsInterpret, Jan 20, 2013.

  1. MsInterpret

    MsInterpret Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Why This 73-Year-Old Is a Gang's Worst Nightmare
    When Mama Hill first opened her doors to children after school, she couldn’t have known that her program would grow into a much-loved community anchor.
    January 14, 2013
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    Millicent 'Mama' Hill has helped countless teenagers in Watts, Calif. find refuge from gangs. (Photo: Ted Soqui Photography).

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    Thriving in Watts, Calif. is a coin flip. Exactly half—49.7%—of the families on the block live below the poverty line. At the local public school, David Starr Jordan High, barely half of the students graduate, and those who do are tempted to run fast—literally, in the case of its most famous alumni, Florence Griffith-Joyner. Five years after Griffith-Joyner set a world record at the 1988 Olympics, Jordan Downs, the housing complex where she grew up, made headlines again as the setting of the gritty crime movie Menace II Society.

    Watts is famous for its gangs. But it's also famous for its dreamers, like the Italian immigrant Sabato Rodia, who spent three decades building the ten-story tall Watts Towers from discarded scrap metal, broken glass, and ceramic tiles. Mix Rodia's ambition with a pragmatism about the hardships facing the neighborhood, and you get 73-year-old Milicent "Mama" Hill, a former LAUSD school teacher who's turned her living room into a makeshift community center. With their parents working late to keep the family afloat (or absent altogether) and the Grape Street Gang roaming the streets looking for new members, kids in Watts need a safe place to go after school. They need someone who's going to ask them about their homework and give them a hug. And so, at an age when most people retire and relax, Hill opened Mama Hill's Help and started her second career as the entire block's mentor and mother.
    Over the last decade, nearly 3,000 kids have come through her door. In a house—and neighborhood—this small, there are no secrets. Mama Hill knows her kids' friends and she knows their enemies. She knows what they did this weekend, she knows what they're doing when they leave, and she knows who they're going with. Everyone is accountable, from who owes his friend an apology to who left that orange peel on the piano. And the kids seem to thrive under her watchfulness, even though they don't always smile when she orders them to clean up their trash.
    FULL STORY: http://www.takepart.com/article/2013/01/11/mama-hill-profile?cmpid=tp-ad-outbrain-general
     
  2. dunwiddat

    dunwiddat Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    God bless her.. She is a real inspiration. The parents and children should be grateful. This is selfless work.... May she live to see many more years:hearts1:
     
  3. cherryblossom

    cherryblossom Banned MEMBER

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    This Elder is AWESOME!

    Thank you for sharing!
     
  4. cherryblossom

    cherryblossom Banned MEMBER

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    More of us need to be "Mama Hill!" :toast:



    ..
     
  5. $$RICH$$

    $$RICH$$ Lyon King Admin. STAFF

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    This what i'm talking bout , see it show that elders can make a change in life
    and a better pathway for our youth......I salute her work
     
  6. Angela22

    Angela22 Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Truly wonderful how she looks after the children! If only more would do the same; many more children would forsake dangerous, fruitless activities for being set straight, and learn a true respect for those older than themselves.
     
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