The Block party on June 15th only lasted about an hour and a half, but more than 160 people stopped by for Community, Culture, Food and prizes.
PBPN Social Services and Housing hosted the event as a way to bring residents together in a positive setting in an effort to get to know community members who might otherwise only interact with the departments in stressful situations.
Sara Rust-Martin, PBPN Social Services Administration said, “We needed a positive experience for the community with both departments so folks could see that while we have to enforce rules, investigate allegations, and impose regulations we are also here to support and value the community.” She added, “We were hoping that people found it to be fun, engaging, and supportive. The event exceeded our expectations.”
The people who were there seemed like they were happy to have an informal time to share and connect post-COVID (or post lockdowns and restrictions). The fact that this event was near a housing cluster made it was easy to attend and participate. The kids had lots of fun in the water games and the adults seemed to have some fun connecting with friends and families. The door prizes were also a big hit.
Liana Onnen, PBPN Director of Housing said, “Visiting and socializing is important to us and this was an opportunity to do that after a long period in which we couldn’t visit face to face. COVID made an existing gap even wider between the community and the programs and we really want to bridge that gap. That starts by being out in the community and providing positive events and experiences with our programs. We really hope this block party is the first of more events to come.”
With all the smiling faces as proof, it was obvious that those in attendance enjoyed the event.