Beacons offer neighborhood groups free “co-locator” space to meet

Chandel Brown is a teacher and 32-year veteran of the international Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. As a member of the Queens Chapter, Chandel dedicates hours of voluntary services to assisting youth, supporting organized charities, and promoting legislation for social and civic change.To fulfill her commitment to Zeta’s mission, Chandel coordinates a girls' leadership group every second and third Saturday at J.H.S. 210 in Ozone Park.

Her program is known as a Beacon “co-locator,” and the group has been active in the space, free of charge, for the past seven years.

A “co-locator” is an organization, informal group, or individual that agrees to deliver a component of the Beacon program, in exchange for free space and the opportunity to provide their services to the Beacon participants or other community members at no charge.

“For years, we struggled to find our own space,” she said. “Then we found the Beacon, and we’ve been spreading our roots ever since.”

Chandel works with seven other Zeta advisors to run the program each Saturday. Most of her participants come directly from JHS. 210 or its nearby feeder schools.

“Having a set location to run our program allowed us to grow from two age groups to three,” Chandel said. “Now we offer workshops for 6-8 year olds, and the parents in the neighborhood couldn’t be more thrilled.”

Chandel teaches a leadership-focused curriculum to girls age 6-18 through hands-on activities, thoughtful group discussions, service projects and fundraisers. Most recently, the group raised $6,000 for March of Dimes.

Our Beacon Programs are funded by Department of Youth and Community Development.


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