Making A Five-year Dream A Reality
By Wesley Fong, President of Chinatown Community Center Association
Five years ago, the Chinatown community wanted a much-needed multicultural community center and affordable senior housing, preferably at 1535 River St. next to Lum Sai Ho Tong Society and temple.
The site is surrounded by a neighborhood with historical and cultural significance — temples, shrines, Chinese schools and a Chinese cultural plaza.
The community center would be a venue for the community, especially seniors, to socialize, exercise, learn new skills, practice old skills and meet new friends.
The affordable senior housing would provide those seniors meeting affordable-income requirements an opportunity to have their own home in Chinatown — an exciting and vibrant place to work, shop, eat and live.
It has been a five-year dream.
Presently, there are 14 affordable housing units in the Chinatown area.
Only two are dedicated to seniors (199 units) and two are multi-family (2,230).
Housing for our seniors is very limited. None are for sale.
In 2013, the City Council unanimously adopted Resolution 13-167, directing the City to build the community center and affordable senior housing at the site. Chinatown Community Center Association (CCCA) was formed to work with the City to implement the provisions of Resolution 13-167 and make the Chinatown community’s five-year dream a reality.
CCCA represents a cross section of the Chinatown community and is supported by more than 95 Chinese and non-Chinese organizations, including Neighborhood Board 13. CCCA is working with the City to establish the multicultural community center and to provide more affordable housing for our seniors. CCCA is a nonprofit organization and is registered with the state of Hawaii. Its board of directors serves pro bono, and it is funded only by donations.
How can you help?
If you would like to support our efforts for a community center and affordable senior housing, please send your donation made payable to Chinatown Community Center to:
CCCA, P.O. Box 37572, Honolulu, HI 96837.
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