Tucson neighborhood fighting reputationPosted: Updated:
Every neighborhood has its problems. The difference in the Myer's neighborhood is a group of residents won't stop until they combat every problem, and that includes fighting off the neighborhood's long standing bad reputation.
It's pretty calm in meyer's neighborhood, which is good. It's been a tough week.
Thursday, there was a deadly shooting. Four people were shot, one person was killed.
The neighborhood has had a high rate of crime, for years. In the last 30 days there have been 45 incidents, mostly thefts and assaults.
When Mary Dryden arrived in the late 1990's she didn't know crime in the area was as bad as it was. She was soon informed.
"In the homes area, it's not a problem. The difficulty is that we're surrounded by apartments," said Dryden.
At least one apartment resident recognizes a similar situation. "Gang fights, I've seen drug deals going down right underneath my nose," said neighbor Christina Charles.
It's an image Mary Dryden and a small group of homeowners in Meyer's neighhborhood continue to try and change. "We wanna see our neighbors be happy," said Dryden.
Dryden and other neighbors decided to step up efforts, in search of money to crackdown on crime. Friday, it paid off. They got more than $52,000 in grant money.
"There's grant services out there, but you go to these neighborhood association meetings and a lot of people don't know what resources are out there," said Milini Simms with Yes Network.
Yes Network is one of four organizations that'll help Meyer's neighborhood put the money to work. "We really want to see neighborhoods take ownership of their area and really become empowered," said Simms.
The underlying goal is to instill hope. "I think if we start losing hope on individual neighborhoods in Tucson, we're losing hope on Tucson as a community," said Simms. "These neighborhoods make up our city."
"I think we've done a lot to bring it up and now we have to keep it up and keep it going," said Dryden.
The Myer's neighborhood grant came from the Connecting Communities Foundation. It's the first grant CCF has awarded. The organization is in it's first year of operation.