Last year we lost access to the Centro Católico Santo del Espiritu community center. The center served the under-resourced Latino population living in Sandy Springs along the corridor of Interstate 285 and Roswell Road. In 2019, the Centro Catolico Santo del Espiritu, the entire community center property and church were sold to developers.
The community center and the classrooms we used were demolished last summer. A self-storage facility will replace the former community center.
The church, three nonprofits (Los Niños Primero included), and several small Latino businesses were displaced. The loss was a leveling blow to the neighborhood and compounded the grief brought on by the pandemic. The center’s location allowed families to walk safely to our classes and services. Transportation is a significant impediment for immigrant families to surmount. Educational and leadership programs provided in their community, improve participation, cultivate a sense of belonging and enrich our city.
Over the last 22 months, Los Niños Primero has worked tirelessly to convince the developers to give us a space to continue our services. After much input from the community, the developer allocated 1600 square feet on the ground floor to our organization. We are thankful that they have also agreed to build a playground and park for the community.