Gennaro, Quinn Meet Local Business Owners, Celebrate Arrival Of Doe Fund
The Union Turnpike commercial district got a boost this week when workers from the Doe Fund started cleaning the area on funds provided by Councilmember James F. Gennaro.
After a meeting with small business owners from the area on August 1, Gennaro, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and Doe Fund Founder and President George McDonald were on hand to celebrate the launch of the latest program in Gennaro’s district—one with a decidedly “green” approach.
The fund, which employs homeless and formerly incarcerated individuals as part of a program fostering private employment and independent living, usually focuses on litter removal from sidewalks and gutter.
Working with Gennaro, who is chairman of the Environmental Protection Committee, the Doe Fund has added the mulching and maintenance of sidewalk tree pits and the collection of used cooking oil from two local restaurants for recycling into biodiesel.
“I am delighted to have advocated for Council funding for the Doe Fund’s neighborhood beautification services, and to meet with entrepreneurs in my district to see how the council can continue to help small businesses in Queens to flourish,” Gennaro said. “It’s exciting to see these new, green aspects of the Doe Fund. Even the mulch the workers use to fill the tree pits is recycled by the city’s Parks Department from tree limbs they have pruned. This is a great opportunity for people to build work experience while helping our neighborhood look its best.”
The commercial district between 188th Street and Utopia Parkway will get the service, which will clean the area three times a week. Gennaro allocated $30,000 for the new fiscal year to bring the Doe Fund to Union Turnpike. He already funds the program in Kew Gardens and Briarwood.
“The city council believes in the work of the Doe Fund,” said Quinn. “This year councilmembers have again allocated substantial funds to the organization, a testament to the good work the Doe Fund does not only for the neighborhoods they help clean up, but especially for the New Yorkers they employ. I am thrilled to welcome the Doe Fund to Union Turnpike and to communities throughout the city.”