Founded by neighborhood native Majora Carter in 2001, the Sustainable South Bronx is dedicated to advancing the economic and environmental rebirth of the South Bronx. Learn more about the Sustainable South Bronx and how this proactive group is dedicated to providing jobs for people in the South Bronx all around New York City. (Nick Scott/MNN)



>>  It wasn’t that, you know, this community didn’t deserve better, it was what happened to it.  A lot of the waste, a lot of the lack of jobs, a lot of the high levels of pollution and the health problems that were a result of that were because of bad policies that allowed for it to happen.  Let’s be proactive.  Let’s come up with a way to plan for this neighborhood so we don't have to fight all these negative things.  Let’s put out the positive things and rebuild this neighborhood. 

Sustainable South Bronx was founded in 2001 really with that premise: to be proactive, to have proactive solutions that offer jobs for the neighborhood, that don't exacerbate health problems and actually restore and reknit this community’s fabric together.  So since 2003, we started a job training program here at Sustainable South Bronx.  And at the end of this year we will have trained over 120 students, not only from the South Bronx but a lot of our students come from all over New York City and the five boroughs.  You know, they have the sort of training that make them a viable candidate to either prune a tree, install a green room, remediate a toxic soil.  It really speaks to how we have approached sustainability. 

You know, the fact that, you know, one person who can go through our program who was formerly incarcerated, all of a sudden has a totally different future. The fact that after ten weeks, they actually believe not only in themselves in terms of what their capacity and capabilities are, but they’re informing their neighbors and they’re informing their neighbors about environmental justice, about pollution, about how trees are helpful and how they’re actually physically changing a place to improve it, and that – they become stewards and part of our organization.  They are the fertilizer for change, you know?  This is not a fad for the South Bronx.  This is not a fad for communities like the South Bronx.  This is really do or die.