Neighborhood Leaders Encourage Unity and Involvement to Support Communities

On February 14, 2023, neighborhood leaders gathered to connect with each other and to encourage others to join them. They spoke about how Estelle McCadden had inspired them.
Stephen Niamke picked up Ms. McCadden’s torch to follow her as the president of the Melrose-Rugby neighborhood. He spoke about being moved by the recent gun violence to bring back the Meta Peace Team.
Leaders are excited to get together again to work on solving problems in our communities. They are looking forward to meeting other people interested in learning how to get involved with their neighborhoods and mentoring new neighborhood leaders.
Freeda Cathcart spoke about when the Roanoke Neighborhood Council created the Safe City Task Force to successfully work with code enforcement and police to stop the spread of drugs in our community. She said, “Neighborhood leaders have a great deal of experience and knowledge that’s synergistic in addressing community problems.”
The following quotes were sent in to be read at the gathering:
Mac McCadden:
“My mother co-founded the Melrose-Rugby Neighborhood Forum (MRNF) nearly 30 years ago as a means to developing a sense of community togetherness: ownership. 23 years ago she founded the Virginia State Neighborhood Conference (VSNC), modeled after neighborhood programs in 8 other states. She then became a member of the board of Neighborhoods USA for mor then 15 years. Estelle McCadden served as president of MRNF and VSNC until her death at 95 on January 31, 2022. All of these accomplishments
happened beyond her 70th birthday. As a result of her neighborhood work, Roanoke City Council passed aresolution renaming Kennedy Park to “Estelle H. McCadden Park”.”

Duane Howard, President Emeritus -Southeast Action Forum
“”With the announcement of the re-development of the Viscose Plant, Hope springs eternal for a revival of S.E. I’m looking forward to gathering with other neighborhood leaders to discuss important issues to our neighborhood like how code violations are enforced as well as the impact of the Rescue Mission and the homeless on our neighborhood.”

Clay McClintok, President Noble Neighborhood Watch in Roanoke NE
“Even if you are not having problems near your home there are reasons for you are come to a neighborhood meeting in your area. You can hear special guest speakers and give your ideas of some fun things to do in your neighborhood. My group at Noble Neighborhood Watch has a motto we printed up on t-shirts saying “Neighbors helping Neighbors”. We all need to be Neighbors Helping Neighbors. If we do this ,we can watch out for each other and help solve crime problems. Your voice will be heard, because there are leaders in the
Neighborhood Watch groups and we will make sure the city will hear you and act .
People interested in connecting with their neighborhood association or neighborhood leadership can fill out this short survey: https://tinyurl.com/NeighborhoodCouncil They can also “Like” the Roanoke City Neighborhood Council and share the social media post linked here to encourage people to fill out the survey.

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