Community Spotlight: Kenyatta Williams – Westside Neighborhoods Beautification Project

It was a proud day for us at the Westside Future Fund when we had the privilege of introducing to the community the Westside’s newest workforce development initiative, our very own Westside Neighborhoods Beautification Project, at our Feb. 17 Summit meeting.

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Members of the Westside Neighborhoods Beautification Project with program operator Ric Geyer of Valkill Industries following their presentation at the Feb. 17 Transform Westside Summit. Photo by Chris Mitchell.

Powered by a grant from the PwC Charitable Foundation and operated by community partners Integrity CDC and Valkill Industries, the pilot job training and placement program is helping Westside residents carve out career paths while cleaning up the community.

The inaugural project cycle kicked off on January 30 with 13 participants employed to help clean and beautify areas in and around the WFF’s four target neighborhoods: Ashview Heights, Atlanta University Center (AUC), English Avenue and Vine City.

Since then, the Beautification Crew has worked more than 900 hours, collected just over 26,000 pounds of trash, covering nearly 17 miles of sidewalk.

Over the coming weeks, we’ll introduce you to members of the Beautification Crew!

First up: Kenyatta Williams, Westside resident of more than 40 years and one of the appointed team leaders for the program.

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Kenyatta Williams with Integrity CDC’s founder and CEO Rev. Howard Beckham and Valkill Industries’ Ric Geyer. Photo by Chris Mitchell.

How did you hear about this program?

By way of a a flyer from a neighbor I befriended in the neighborhood.

What have you enjoyed most about being a part of this program?

What I’ve enjoyed most is being noticed and recognized by the organization for my needs more so than for my lack of accreditation.

As one of two project supervisors, what are your daily duties?

As supervisor I keep inventory of supplies, keep track of work completed and make sure everyone is aware of what’s to come for future assignments.

How do you feel you’ve been impacted by the the program so far?

What has impacted me most is assurance of a brighter future if I stay the course in my endeavors.

What are your hopes for the Westside?

My hopes for the Westside is to rid it of hopelessness and make it safer and cleaner to raise my children.

02.17.2017 WESTSIDE FUND010 photo Chris Mitchell C3hD8fwXAAAhwPq