History of the Newfield Terrace Community Action Organization

 

The Newfield Terrace Community Action Organization (NTCAO) was formally organized on July 25, 1977, by a group of concerned citizens who had just completed their second year of food service and recreation programs sponsored by S.C.O.P.E.

Everyone agreed that they should continue their work, and do more to keep the community together. "We should organize into a community organization", said Mr Robert Jones. Everyone in the group was in agreement, but they had to get more of the community involved. So Mr Jones began talking to neighbors and they also agreed. The group decided on a night to have their meetings and soon flyers were made. Mr Jones distributed the flyers and they held their first meeting at the Truth Baptist Church in Newfield.

The First Meeting

The group was off to a very productive beginning. Officers were elected at this first meeting: Cleo Jones, President; Elizabeth Brown, Vice President; Jennie Walker, Secretary; Laura Brown, Assistant Secretary; and Virginia Arthur-Garrison, Treasurer. All members of the community were invited to become members of the organization and committees were formed. With the help of Mrs. Marion Petway of Newfield and Mrs. Beatrice Corbin of Vineland, the group became incorporated in 1979. Committeewoman Linda Green was liaison for the NTCAO.

Progress

Truth Baptist Church, under the pastorage of Reverend Walter Jones allowed classes and meeting to be held in the church. With the assistance of Bob Broughton, Gloucester County Director of Community Affairs, they solicited help from the Franklin Township Committee. They began to work with Business Administrator, Albert Manton. Their aim was to foster community improvements and awareness in the community.

Accomplishments (Past and Present)

Long Range Goals

The long range goal of the Organization was to establish a to provide services for everyone, from the very young to the more matured. They began to network with other organizations to provide pre-school, day care and programs for the Senior Citizens as well as informational services for community growth.

In 1982 an application to the Community Development Block Grant Program was written for funds to build a Community Center. The application was approved and $184,000 was awarded to the Organization. While $172,000 went to the construction of the building, $12,000 went to rehabilitate houses in the Newfield Terrace section of Franklin Township.

After years of waiting and planning, the Newfield Terrace Community Center was completed and dedicated on January 19, 1991.

Moving Forward

The After-School and Tutoring programs continue to serve school-aged children in the community. Marlene Aikens, Director of the Youth Division along with a group of certified teachers - Professor Elwood Nichols, Mrs Betty Nichols, and Freya Dinshah volunteered their time to work with the students. Later Vivian Guyton and Marietta Webster added their services. Over the years, several Delsea Regional High School students have also volunteered their time with the Youth Division.

Delsea Regional High School Superintendent, Frank Borelli, McGuire Air Force Base and ECP Business Machines, formally of Malaga now located in Vineland, NJ donated several used computers to help get the Computer Lab established in 1999. In fiscal year 2003/2004 the NTCAO was awarded its first Computer Technology grant from the Delaware River and Bay Authority to purchase new computers.

Since 2004, the NTCAO has sponsored an annual Scholarship Breakfast on Mother's Day. The proceeds from this event go to the Scholarship Program for high school graduates in the Newfield Terrace and surrounding areas who are continuing their education.

A playground for small children and a basketball court were installed by Franklin Township with a grant through Consumer Affairs. the Franklin Township Police Department has worked very closely with the Organization - coming out to speak to the community members about what's going on in Newfield Terrace and surrounding areas. They sponsor the Neighborhood Watch meetings at the center where the entire community is invited to get involved.

The Youth Division has sponsored many activities such as recreation, entertainment, lock-ins, educational and fun trips, training programs, drug abuse, single parent and teen-age pregnancy seminars.

The Center is also used for aerobics classes twice a week. It is also available to rent for weddings, family reunions, special interest groups, and organizational meetings.

Mission and Purpose Statement:

To improve the quality of life of residents in our community and surrounding areas.

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