New Hilltop commissioners introduced; community center proposed

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By Josephine Birdsell
Staff Writer

The Greater Hilltop Area Commission formally announced its newly-elected commissioners at its regularly scheduled meeting on Oct. 6.

Leah Brudno, Jennie Keplar, Victoria Klein and Josh Paxton are to begin serving on the commission starting Jan. 4, 2021. There is one open commission seat remaining that will be filled by appointment.

In other news, MyProjectUSA is seeking to build a grassroots community center in the area.

The Hilltop Youth Wellness Center is to be built at 3275 Sullivant Ave. The site will include a free market with fresh produce, a café, a community garden, an E-learning support center for students, a career development center for adults and a small landscaped recreation space, in addition to office and storage space to help the organization manage their existing after school programs and pantry.

All community center services would be open to the public.

“MyProjectUSA envisions strong American youth building a stronger, just and more inclusive America through their leadership and public services, while keeping themselves and their peers safe from social vices like gangs, drugs, sex-trafficking, bullying, drinking, violence and extremism,” said Aden Mohamed, representative.

The community center will help MyProjectUSA achieve that vision, he said.

The commission signed a letter in support of the community center that will be sent to Columbus City Council. The letter asks for city assistance to complete the project, including funding for construction and maintenance of the property, signage and wages for hired staff. The letter also asks for proper permits for construction and maintenance of the space.

“MyProjectUSA is an incredibly unique organization that focuses on the protection and empowerment of youth, and I personally feel extremely fortunate to be a part of an organization that not only serves the community but also allows individuals to grow and have a positive impact on the westside,” Mohamed said.

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