WORCESTER, Mass., June 17 /PRNewswire/ -- The University Park Partnership (UPP), a widely recognized grassroots effort to bring a better quality of life to a Main South neighborhood of Worcester will receive a national award for excellence in New York City on Thursday, June 19. The award will be accepted by Clark University and the Main South Community Development Corporation (MSCDC) from Seedco, a nonprofit New York City corporation supported by the Ford Foundation. Seedco provides technical and financial assistance to community based organizations and institutions working in partnership to revitalize communities. Since 1986, Seedco has provided grants and low-interest loans totaling nearly $370,000 to support Clark-MSCDC programs in affordable housing, economic development and related activities. In addition, the University Park Partnership has also attracted $2.4 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, which considers UPP a national model, and more than $2 million in support from Worcester-area foundations. Clark and the MSCDC were participants in Seedco's first large-scale program, the Urban Institutions Program, which involved more than 20 projects nationwide. "The Clark-MSCDC partnership exemplifies the Seedco mission of encouraging anchor institutions to recognize their key role as a community stakeholder and provide tangible resources in support of the revitalization strategy developed by the institution and community," said Seedco President Thomas Seessel. Since UPP was announced nearly two years ago, substantial progress has been made, including the establishment of a collaborative school between Clark and the Worcester public schools, the creation of a neighborhood Alert Center for the delivery of municipal services, the relocation of the Clark University president's home to historic Woodland Street, the purchase of homes by Clark faculty and staff and the development of after-school and summer programs for neighborhood children. Also, crime in the UPP target area has measurably decreased.
SOURCE Clark University