ECHO PARK — Do kids and senior citizens play well together? Echo Park will soon find out as the city prepares to open a “mini-multipurpose” senior center at the Sandra Cisneros Learning Academy, a K-8 charter school.
Councilman Mitch O’Farrell said that Echo Park’s new and only senior center will be dedicated on March 17 after the City Council approved a $1.6 million contract to establish and operate the facility. In addition to traditional services catering to the elderly, the center will also operate two programs intended to connect senior citizens and students. One program would involve having the seniors tutor the students in academic subjects while another would have the adults mentor the the kids on healthy eating and active lifestyles, according to city documents.
Saint Barnabas Senior Center of Los Angeles and the Pacific Region Older Adult Services and Information System would be paid to set up and operate the Echo Park senior center.
Funds for the center had been approved some time ago. But the opening was delayed in part until a final agreement could be reached with L.A. Unified, according to city documents.
The center’s services will be targeted to those 60 and over with the “greatest economic and social need, and with particular attention to low income minorities,” according to the contract. The center will be open at least eight hours a day, Monday through Friday.
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Cecilia Padilla-Brill, Editor
Echo Park Weekly
Jesús Sanchez, Publisher