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2,000+ Bayview residents celebrate learning at BMAGIC’s backpack giveaway

September 28, 2015

by Tamara Aparton

Public Defender Jeff Adachi, founder of BMAGIC and a much loved figure in Bayview Hunters Point, talks with a family – the children sporting their brand new backpacks – in beautiful Youngblood Coleman Park, located on a steep, wooded hillside in Hunters Point.

Public Defender Jeff Adachi, founder of BMAGIC and a much loved figure in Bayview Hunters Point, talks with a family – the children sporting their brand new backpacks – in beautiful Youngblood Coleman Park, located on a steep, wooded hillside in Hunters Point.

More than 2,000 people eager to get a jump on the school year flocked to BMAGIC’s Bayview Hunters Point Back to School Celebration at Youngblood Coleman Park Aug. 15, where kindergartners through high school seniors received new backpacks, uniforms and school supplies.

The event is among the largest and most comprehensive of its kind in the Bay Area. Nearly 1,200 backpacks stuffed with school supplies were handed out to families by the staff and volunteers of BMAGIC (Bayview Mobilization for Adolescent Growth in our Communities). For the fifth year, the Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation provided free school uniform shirts, while FOCUS North America gave away 600 pairs of athletic shoes. The Bayview YMCA promoted healthy lifestyles by offering tai chi, yoga, cardio and strengthening activities.

BMAGIC was initiated by the Public Defender’s Office in 2004. BMAGIC and its sister organization Mo’ MAGIC, which serves the Western Addition, reduces the number of youth who enter the juvenile justice system or fall through social service gaps by efficiently coordinating opportunities, support and resources.

BMAGIC has been a leader in the revitalization of Youngblood Coleman Park, and they got to show it off at this year’s backpack giveaway to a lot of happy families, including many new to the neighborhood, now San Francisco’s last hope for affordable housing.

BMAGIC has been a leader in the revitalization of Youngblood Coleman Park, and they got to show it off at this year’s backpack giveaway to a lot of happy families, including many new to the neighborhood, now San Francisco’s last hope for affordable housing.

San Francisco Public Defender Jeff Adachi, San Francisco Police Chief Greg Suhr, State Sen. Mark Leno and Assemblymember Phil Ting spoke to families gathered at the event. Nearly 100 community-based organizations working in the areas of health, environment, juvenile and social justice, faith-based and after-school programming were also present.

“Families in the Bayview are struggling to remain in the city amid record income inequality,” Adachi said. “Our goal is to make school preparation a little easier by providing the tools kids need to succeed in the classroom.”

The events are also a chance for neighborhood families to connect with one another, said BMAGIC Executive Director Lyslynn Lacoste.

“The back-to-school celebration and backpack giveaway strengthens our communities while making sure every student has a quality backpack and supplies for the first day of school,” Lacoste said.

“Families in the Bayview are struggling to remain in the city amid record income inequality,” Adachi said. “Our goal is to make school preparation a little easier by providing the tools kids need to succeed in the classroom.”

BMAGIC event sponsors included the San Francisco 49ers Foundation, Comcast, Golden State Warriors, Union Bank, San Francisco Federal Credit Union, Bayview Hunters Point YMCA, Sutter Health/California Pacific Medical Center, Recology, Rainbow Grocery Cooperative, San Francisco Wholesale Produce Market, Bayview HEAL Zone, San Francisco Recreation and Parks, Don’s Auto Body, O’Reilly Auto Parts, San Francisco Honda, Metta Fund and Transportation Workers Union of America Local 250-A.

Tamara Barak Aparton, communications and policy assistant in the San Francisco Public Defender’s Office, can be reached at Tamara.Aparton@sfgov.org.

3 thoughts on “2,000+ Bayview residents celebrate learning at BMAGIC’s backpack giveaway

  1. teenzraul

    The parents look very glad to be a part of school events. A get together at school obviously reminds us of the old times at our schools, and gives our childhood days back to us. Families in the Bayview really enjoyed this 42u server rack opportunity.

    Reply

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