Northland News

Completed Beaumont survey to be unveiled

By ThisWeek Community News  • 

The Beaumont survey is completed, and the first public presentation regarding the in-depth look at the Northland neighborhood is set for Wednesday, Aug. 14.

Northland Alliance Chairwoman Joyce Bourgault has scheduled the ninth in an ongoing series of Nonprofit Summit meetings that day for organizations and agencies that are based in or serve residents of the area.

The gathering will take place at the Haimerl Center, 1421 Morse Road, with registration beginning at 8:30 a.m.

The Aug. 14 session will include a presentation from the Rev. Kwesi Gyimah regarding a disaster plan for the Northland area and an update on progress in establishing a "nonprofit mall," according to the agenda Bourgault distributed last week.

The Nonprofit Summit is scheduled to conclude at noon.

Those planning to attend are asked to call 614-262-5094 or send an email to helpinghandsfreeclinic@hotmail.com by Tuesday, Aug. 13, providing the name of the person attending, the organization represented and a telephone number.

Originally developed as a single-family neighborhood in the late 1950s and early 1960s, the Beaumont area gradually saw large-scale, low-cost apartment development take place on the perimeter. In recent years, these apartments have drawn an influx of immigrants and refugees and -- in some cases -- have become crime hotspots. Survey-takers were warned away from some of the complexes.

Although 23 percent of the neighborhood's housing is apartments, 43 percent of the residents live in multifamily units.

A team of 11 people, mostly volunteers, either asked residents the 150 questions on the survey or helped to compile the results, project manager Sandy LaFollette said.

The results, she added, could be very useful to the participants at the Northland Nonprofit Summit.

"I'm really happy with it because it will help us get grants and help us make improvements where improvements are needed and take the guesswork out of it," LaFollette said.

Tamar Mott Forrest, associate director of the Methodology Core at the International Poverty Solutions Collaborative, part of Ohio State University's College of Education and Human Ecology, Human Development and Family Science, will discuss the findings of the Beaumont Survey from approximately 9:40 to 10:15 a.m., according to the agenda Bourgault distributed.

"There were some surprises in the survey, which I expect she will bring up," she said. "We were surprised that, for the residents who were surveyed, they are happy with where they live. They are not as concerned about the crime as we thought they would be. There are places they don't want to go to, and we'll be talking about that.

"They like their neighbors, and an interesting detail, they feel they can rely more on help from family, friends and neighbors than they can churches or social service agencies.

"We learned some weaknesses about our system, also, and there will be some talk about those issues, too."

The Aug. 14 summit session will conclude with an update on progress being made by the Northland Nonprofit Center steering committee, which is looking into establishing a single location where a variety of agencies can either have their headquarters or office space.

"We have a very solid set of six nonprofits now that we would call anchor nonprofits that will move a good portion of their operations, if not all of their operations, into the mall," Bourgault said.

She said there will be some discussion about issuing a letter of intent to the Columbus Foundation, the first step in applying for grant money to help fund the "mall" for nonprofits.

"It's a highly competitive area, and we're hoping we have an opportunity apply for that grant," Bourgault said.

"Things are moving," she added. "I'm feeling very positive about some of the things that are going on. We're getting some solid information about who is involved in these efforts."

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