10 SEEDS of CHANGE  |  March 2013

Seed #1Code Compliance Services

Students help to wipe out graffiti: Last month, Adamson High School students and Code Compliance Graffiti Abatement Division staff joined forces to eradicate graffiti in the 2500 and 2600 block of Wynnewood Drive. The group also picked up litter on Crawford, East 10th, North Storey, and East Ninth Streets near Adamson High School. The group of 20 students and seven staff members removed graffiti at 20 locations and picked up 10 bags of trash.

Adamson High School students
Adamson High School students


Staff members earn Zumba certification: More than a dozen Park and Recreation employees are now certified Zumba instructors after successfully completing training workshops for the Latin dance-inspired fitness program. Five of the instructors have also gone on to achieve specialty certifications. Zumba instructors and the recreation centers they represent are Cecilia Mendoza, Umphress; Tammy Cooper, Reverchon; Charee Parker-Dyer, Cummings; Andrea Hernandez, Anita Martinez; Priscilla Soliz, Grauwyler; Geraldo Tellez, Bachman; and Luz Lesmes, Jaycee Zaragoza.

After completing the basics, Andrea Cokes of Kleberg-Rylie and Sheila Sanders of Larry Johnson received additional training for Zumbatomics (Zumba for kids), learning how to modify routines to make them age and developmentally appropriate. Yolanda Carter of J.C. Turner, Veronica Gonzalez of K.B. Polk and Delia Lujan of Kleberg-Rylie now are certified in Zumba Gold designed for seniors and special populations. Their training allows them to modify routines to meet the needs of active older participants. Zumba is offered at 10 recreation centers and Park Department officials hope to expand the popular program. To register for a class visit www.dallasparks.org.

Seed #2South Dallas Cultural Center

Vicki Meek selected to create public art sculpture: The Nasher Sculpture Center celebrated its first decade with a $1 million initiative to grace 10 areas of Dallas with sculptural installations over the next year. One of the 10 artists selected to create a public art sculpture is South Dallas Cultural Center Manager Vicki Meek. Meek is the only local artist selected for the honor. Nationally recognized, her work is in the permanent collections of the African American Museum in Dallas, The Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, and Norwalk Community College in Norwalk, Connecticut. She has been awarded three public arts commissions with the Dallas Area Rapid Transit Art Program and was co-artist on the largest public art project in Dallas, the Dallas Convention Center Public Art Project. In addition, Meek is an independent curator and writes cultural criticism for Literafeelya, an online art publication and ARTLIES: A Texas Art Journal.

Seed #2Dallas Police Department

Southeast Division Chief on the Beat: Last month, the Southeast Patrol hosted a Chief on the Beat Crime Prevention, Safety and Health Fair at Lincoln High School, 2826 Hatcher St. Dallas Police Chief David O. Brown along with DPD Community Affairs Southeast Division, Dallas Fire-Rescue, Code Enforcement, Emergency Management and other City departments were on hand to engage the community. Visitors also enjoyed free health screenings, entertainment, childrenís activities and information on wellness programs.


Maintenance workers recognized: Park and Recreation Maintenance Services Division recognized the accomplishments and dedication of 250 maintenance employees at its annual performance meeting at Fair Park. Assistant Director John Jenkins provided highlights from the divisionís annual report and discussed goals and objectives for the year. Jenkins acknowledged other Park and Recreation division staff for their ongoing support to maintenance services. They were: Recreation Services, Fair Park and Community Services, Facility Services, Human Resources, Information Technology Services, Planning and Design, Purchasing, Administration and Budget divisions. The separation of the recreation and maintenance divisions was a notable change. The reorganization allowed maintenance to produce goals, objectives, and operational standards specific to each position within the division.


Kleberg-Rylie hosts Library Live: Kleberg-Rylie Branch Library hosted Sandy Shrout as part of Big Thoughtís Library Live! Shrout presented folk and fairy tales with puppets. Every child who participated also got to make their very own puppets from everyday objects to take home. One girl was so excited since she would be able to do a puppet show for her little sister and teach her how to make the puppets too!

Portable Paper Dragons

Dallas Public Library Kleberg-Rylie After School Art program: For Chinese New Year, the Kleberg-Rylie after School Art program made Portable Paper Dragons! Kids were treated to Chinese fortune cookies, learned about the Chinese New Year, and made an amazing craft. Children from preschool age to teens participated in this fun drop-in. After School Art is held from 3:30 to 5 p.m. every Thursday.

Computer tutoring at Kleberg-Rylie: Kleberg-Rylie continues to offer one-on-one computer tutoring by appointment. A library employee will help customers determine what level of computer help is needed, then walk them through steps to bring their skills to a more comfortable level. Several patrons visited a Dallas Public Library for the first time to take advantage of this unique program.

Seed #2Housing/Community Services

WIC gardening projects promote healthy eating: The City of Dallas WIC program has started three gardening projects, including two in south Dallas. The third project will be a large container garden this spring at the Northwest Highway WIC Clinic. Besides promoting healthy eating, the projects will also demonstrate how to grow fruits and vegetables and maintain a garden. Foods grown will be harvested and used in recipes, which will be served to enhance nutrition education. Vegetable harvested last year were shared were shared with class participants and clients in the waiting area. Many participants noted that everything tasted fresher and better than what they purchase at the store.

Seed #2Dallas Public Library

ESL and tax help at Pleasant Grove: More than 100 people came to English as a Second Language classes last month at the Pleasant Grove Branch Library. Classes filled up immediately due to the large community response. The AARP again provides free tax help at the Pleasant Grove Branch Library, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Friday.

Dallas Public Library Adult/Teen Reading Challenge at Mountain Creek: The Mountain Creek Branch held its ninth annual Adult/Teen Reading Challenge. The six-week program was open to anyone 14 and older. Participants got one entry form for each book checked out and were encouraged to write a review in the form provided with the entry. The reviews were posted so that other customers can read them and find new authors. Many participants say the program has broadened their reading tastes and patrons have asked about the next program each year. The library hosted an end of program party on March 16 with prizes, including Half Price Books gift cards, gift cards to restaurants and bakeries, haircuts and other prizes.

Dallas Public Library Senior dance lessons at Pleasant Grove: Free dance lessons for seniors began in February, at Pleasant Grove Branch Library. The classes are hosted by a local dancer with a dance arts degree from Southern Methodist University and feature all kinds of dance styles. Sponsored by Creative Aging, the lessons are held from 10 a.m. to noon every Friday and will continue until May.

Seed #2 Dallas Water Utilities

Cease the Grease

Students learn about water purification: Cease the Grease staff visited Anderson Elementary School to show students how science is used to clean our drinking water and our wastewater. Students learned how Dallas Water Utilities purifies water from area lakes and sends it to customers, and how used water or wastewater returns through sewer pipes back to one of two wastewater treatment plants. Wastewater is cleaned and treated and released into the Trinity River and back into the water cycle.

Seed #2 10 Dallas Public Library

Women teaching someone to crochet

Crochet at Prairie Creek: Interested in learning how to crochet? Have you been crocheting for years? Prairie Creek Branch Library is inviting the public to Crochet @ the Creek. The Library is hosting a bilingual crochet group from 10 a.m. to noon the third Saturday of every month. The class is free and open to all ages and abilities. For more information call (214) 671-0410.