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DBNA launches video challenge to highlight Meditation Room; info session today regarding new Atlantic Yards/Nets/DBNA foundation

Well, the Barclays Center Meditation Room may inspire some quizzical responses and snark from sports fans--and others who see it as a little used concession to a key Atlantic Yards supporter.

But the Downtown Brooklyn Neighborhood Alliance (DBNA), founded by that supporter, the Rev. Herbert Daughtry and funded by developer Forest City Ratner, is doing its part to try highlight the value of the room, offering Moments of Peace: The Meditation Room Video Challenge.

It has invited its Community Partners--the groups that get free tickets to arena events distributed by the DBNA--to go to the Meditation Room, choose one of the words on the walls--LOVE, PEACE, FORGIVE, BELIEVE, REJOICE, FAITH--and make a three-to-four minute video explaining how that word plays a role in their life, as noted in the rules at right.

Five winning videos will be chosen each month, and the makers will get two tickets to an arena event.

As noted in the document at bottom:
The goals of the video challenge are: 1) To help dissipate the overwhelming pessimism that often accompanies living in NYC 2) To acknowledge the impact words have on how we view life and what they inspire us to do 3) To build a sense of camaraderie amongst Brooklyn-based not-for-profit organizations.
I suspect there are a couple of other goals: 1) get more use of and attention for the Meditation Room (despite the contradiction of filming a video in a place of quiet); 2) provide videos for the DBNA to use to promote its work.

The DBNA is probably the most active of all the signatories of the Atlantic Yards Community Benefits Agreement (CBA).

Informational session for new foundation

Also note an informational session today for organizations seeking to apply for grants from the Atlantic Yards/Nets/DBNA Community Foundation, which, as I've written, is a little murky about who's in charge, and how long it will operate.

The new foundation will give grants of $5,000 to Brooklyn-based community organizations, which work under the following categories:
  • fostering economic self-sufficiency
  • prisoner re-entry initiatives
  • youth and child programs
  • health programs
  • environmental sustainability
Applications are due by 4/1/15. (A separate capacity-building grant deadline is 4/15/15.)

The session will be held at DBNA offices at 415 Atlantic Avenue, aka the House of the Lord Church.