project leader
Deon D
13 Louis Place
(Ocean Hill-Brownsville-Bed-Stuy)
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the project

It's common knowledge that the Covid-19 pandemic disproportionately slammed people of color in New York City's lowest-income neighborhoods and exacerbated mental health issues and food insecurity.

Not Just Hoops has been working for more than a decade to uplift and give opportunity to youth in the central Brooklyn community, especially in Bed-Stuy, Ocean Hill and Brownsville.

Most charities are focused on giveaways, rather than building a community. We are focused on building our community through establishing healthy small businesses and hubs, where everyone has a chance to heal, and overcome severe mental health challenges caused by devastating loss in the communities we serve.

Funds will go to beautifying and community-building activities such a healthy cafe where local residents can have relaxing places to obtain healthy beverages and fresh dishes to serve the community where fresh food is limited. We look to start a vegetable garden, and incorporate gardening workshops, that will be hosted at Marge Matthew Garden.  Not Just Hoops in conjunction with The Essence Of Jayce, Inc. (Children With Special Needs) organization, will provide programs and workshops for special needs and at-risk children, i.e. “Art In The Garden” event and “The Sensory Garden Project” as well as create the first flower-arranging business for the community where locals will learn how to grow flowers and create flower arrangements.

The funding will also assist with our collaboration with Seeds In The Middle in the creation of the Marge Matthew’s Garden’s Farmer’s Market that will be available from the Spring until late Fall. We will provide free coupons so that every family and individual in need will be able to obtain fresh fruits and vegetables at the Farmer’s Market



the steps

August thru September – With the help of resident volunteers and interns from the City Cleanup Corp Group program, we will be preparing the Marge Matthew Garden for renovation (leveling the ground and the relocation of plants, trees, gazebo and storage shed) by the City Parks Foundation’s Green Thumb Operations Unit.  The preparation for the garden entails removal of stepping stones embedded in the garden’s ground; removal of garbage and debris to be bagged for sanitation pickup; relocating large pieces of lumber to be used to create seating for garden's cafe; pruning of trees and various bushes; removal of small plants to be relocated in another part of the garden; and painting projects i.e. gazebo, trellis and storage shed.

October – The City Parks Foundation’s Green Thumb Operations Unit is scheduled to renovate the garden during this month by leveling the ground; relocating the gazebo and storage shed; move and save large plants; re-lay brick pathway; and re-lay all large plants to specified locations in the garden. We will also be publicizing widely the re-opening of the Marge Matthew Community Garden and the celebration ceremony that will take place in November.

November: The Opening Ceremony Celebration for the Garden that will provide information to the residents what events, workshops and other specialty wellness programs that will be provided in the Garden throughout the year.  Workshops on creating healthy drinks, and creating healthy dishes will be part of the celebration.  After the Opening Ceremony Celebration, we will be creating the following areas in the Marge Matthew Garden:  a sensory garden section, a vegetable garden section, the garden café section, the Farmer’s Market station and workshop location. 

December: Not Just Hoops will host a holiday season event for the community residents to close the Marge Matthew Garden until the Spring.

why we're doing it

Central Brooklyn is one of three neighborhoods in New York City with the highest rates of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, premature death, maternal mortality and now Covid-19 deaths and suffering. We are predominantly people of color, who suffer from devastating health disparities and a chronic lack of access to affordable, nearby fresh and healthy food that can combat these preventable diseases. 

Many of our residents and seniors suffer from disabilities. 

The Centers for Disease Control cites 75 percent of Americans do not eat enough fruits, more than half do not enough eat enough vegetables and 64% consume too much saturated fats. 

These neighborhoods - Bed-Stuy, Ocean Hill and Brownsville - are swamped with fast food, junk and processed food, all high in sugar and sodium and fat - all directly tied to the high rates of preventable disease among people of color across the country, especially New York.

There is a critical lack of nutrition education and access to information on the impact of these poisonous foods on the community. 

All of our activities and hubs will create positive awareness of the importance of healthy eating and a healthy lifestyle and most importantly, will make these opportunities nearby and affordable for all, including those suffering from disabilities and seniors who are isolated due to their inability to move. 


Disbursed Budget 11.10.21

The Parks Department got us started off for free, but there's still much to do for our space! 

Gardening, painting, lighting for nighttime, benches to sit on, will likely exceed the amount of funds we've raised for $8,510.40, but if we have funds left over, we will be hiring an artist to create a mural, and use funds towards developing programming for the kids. 

TOTAL RAISED = $8,640.00
ioby Fiscal Sponsorship Fee (5%) N/A
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%) $129.60

Original Budget:

Art Workshops for At-Risk Kids: $4,300

Marge Matthew Garden Activities (include flower bouquet workshops): $3200

Healthy Cafe Salaries for 4 Women at Cafes at PS-IS 178 and PS 284 + stipends for youth + training (2021) - $6000

Free Coupons for Fresh Food for Farm Stands and Cafes: $10,000

Administrative Costs/Printing/Equipment: $5500

Plants/Gardening materials: $1000 

ioby Fiscal Sponsorship Fee (5%) N/A
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%)
(Donation processing fee does not apply to match funding.)

Donation processing fees apply to donations only. 100% of match funding goes to projects. Please note, fees are estimated here and final numbers may change based on the final amount raised and amount of match funding applied to this campaign.


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This is where photos will go once we build flickr integration


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