Community Action Group Secures DSPR Basketball Hoop For The Savan Area

Community Action Group Secures DSPR Basketball Hoop For The Savan Area

CHARLOTTE AMALIE — Community Action NOW! Executive Director Iffat Walker said discussions he’s had with government officials will soon benefit the youth of the Savan community. 

“Due to the rising numbers in COVID-19 cases, we made the decision to cancel the onsite meeting originally scheduled for August 26th at the Romeo Malone Community Center. Despite the cancellation, it is critical that we provide an update on the outcomes following our July community forum in Savan,” says Iffat Walker, Executive Director.  

Following the forum, Commissioner Calvert White reached out to CAN’S Executive Director Iffat Walker to inform her that despite the fact that the Savan Basketball court does not fall under his agency, instead falls under Housing & Finance Authority, he was inspired during the forum to move forward in spearheading the project so that children in Savan can have an outlet.   

In an email dated July 29, 2021 to Iffat Walker, Commissioner White wrote “Good Day, I can no longer sit back while our community suffers. I took it upon myself to purchase two adjustable rims for the Savan community.”   

Since this email, Commissioner White began organizing in partnership with CAN, Director of USVI Fire Services Daryl George, Senator Dwayne DeGraff, Public Works and several members of the Savan community to revitalize the basketball court –cleaning up the court, painting the court and installing light and rims at the court.   “Actions speaks louder than words, we can’t see it yet, but those rims have just saved at least one life in Savan” says White. 

“This is WHY we do the work that we do here at CAN  We must continue to advocate for the communities that we serve in order to motivate and inspire action in our leadership and community as a whole, that’s our role–enough with the talking about the issues, we must address them. This is what real progress looks like. I am thankful for Commissioner White in all that he does to support our mission for Savan” says Iffat Walker. 

Solarize St. Thomas’ Share the SUN program – Following our community forum, CAN launched the community intake for the Share the SUN program conducting intake for Savan and surrounding communities on the Island of St. Thomas.  St. Thomas residents were invited to register at the Romeo Malone center.  “Our initial goal was to register 50 low- or moderate-income residents for mobile solar systems and 9 for fixed systems. To date, we have conducted intake on 49 applicants, pre-qualified nearly 30. We are excited for this progress; we are going to exceed our program goal in record time. This is great news for Savan and surrounding communities. We anticipate the first 20 devices to be distributed at the Romeo Malone center within the next 2 weeks. This is an important step in meeting our mission of providing at vulnerable populations with resources to combat poverty.  We are excited to administer this program. This work most certainly demonstrates our ability to reach the most vulnerable populations and getting the job done. We are thankful for this partnership with Solarize St.Thomas ” says Iffat Walker. 

Registration for the Share the SUN program is ongoing until the 17th of September. St.  Thomas residents that are income eligible for the Share the Sun Program are asked to contact Ms. Hodge at the Romeo Malone Community Center at 340.474.1510 to schedule an appointment to register for this program.  

Savaneros United NOW! (SUN) – Residents of Savan were informed of a grant received in the amount of $1,000 to legally form Savaneros United NOW! (SUN) as a DBA of Community Action NOW, engage the community and develop community needs assessments/surveys that examine the community needs post Irma/Maria.  This grant was received through the Community Foundation of the USVI’s (CFVI) Neighborhood Recovery and Revitalization grants. The initial planning phase has begun. CAN will formalize (SUN) by mid-September. Residents of Savan that attended the forum should expect to receive a phone call and/or email requesting participation in a community survey/needs assessment as invited to volunteer with SUN. “We will continue to do what is necessary to revitalize, engage and advocate on behalf of the Savan. We are thankful for the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands for continually supporting our efforts. We are grateful,” says Iffat Walker. 

Community Action NOW! is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.   We are on a mission to provide those in underserved communities with resources to combat poverty through social justice advocacy, disaster management, education, and outreach services.   

For more information about our agency and how you can support our efforts in Savan and surrounding USVI communities, please send an email request to: info@communityactionnow.org.