January 23, 2013 | 313 views
Community Enrichment Mini-Center closes
High rents an obstacle to attracting tenants in Hewlett and Woodmere
Following a nearly two and a half year run, the Community Enrichment Mini-Center (CEmC) on Broadway in Woodmere officially closed its doors on Jan. 7, due to financial constraints, according to Ann Schockett, the executive leader of the Woodmere Republican club and mastermind behind the CEmC.
“In our last few months we tried to fundraise and didn’t want to charge groups that were using the place,” Schockett said. “Times have gotten tough and it became harder. We sold ad space on our monitor, people made donations and we held some functions to raise money but it’s gotten to the point where it became too much and we have to take a break and figure things out.”
The idea for the CEmC arose in August 2010 after the Woodmere Republican Club storefront opened, Schockett said. “After the first few months, I found that people were calling me more about problems they were having like jobs, resume services and foreclosure,” she said. “I found that I was spending most of my time sending people to different resource centers and helping them with problems so I started offering seminars run by community leaders and business owners in different areas. This really wasn’t just the Woodmere Republican Club anymore, it became more of a community center.”
Clubs, seminars and community projects, including a chess club, Artist of the Month and the Clean Sweep events where community members picked up trash and swept neighborhood streets, took place or were initiated at the CEmc. “They were all offered in one space,” Schockett said. “A lot of people did extremely well.”
Woodmere resident Alli Berman was the CEmC’s art programs director. She coordinated art exhibits and chose the Long Island Artist of the Month who was featured at the center. “It was a lot of fun going through the art and choosing them for the exhibits,” she said. “It was a good program and it’s unfortunate that they had to close.”