Agency looks to promote south Lima development

LIMA — One group in Lima is hoping to bring some new life to the city’s south end, holding a meet and greet event Saturday evening to hopefully help other community members catch that same vision.

The South Lima Community Development Corporation, now in its second year of existence, held its meet and greet Saturday at the American Legion, featuring an evening of food and music to celebrate the holiday season while introducing attendees to the work the organization is doing to improve the quality of life in the south end of Lima, defined as the area of the city south of Elm Street and east of Metcalf Street.

“We started the South Lima Community Development Corporation because we want to see a better Lima,” corporation vice-president Sheri Gary said. “We want to see some redevelopment. We want to see some community events going on, and we want to give back to the community.”

Those efforts have included repainting the exterior of Mama Dots Soul Food Kitchen on St. Johns Avenue, as well as holding a back-to-school block party that included giveaways of school uniforms and supplies. While the organization is hoping to make the block party an annual event, the group is hoping that, as it continues to partner with agencies like the United Way of Greater Lima and companies like Procter & Gamble and Lima Memorial Health System, it will be able to improve the south end of Lima one house and one project at a time.

“We can help the elderly, even if it’s just a beautification with flowers or making their yard pretty,” Gary said. “Maybe they need screening for screens or window air conditioners. Whatever the need is, we want to help with those, as well.”

Lima Mayor Sharetta Smith also spoke at the event, emphasizing the need for organizations like the South Lima Community Development Corporation to foster community development.

“We’re excited to have an additional community partner here in the city helping with housing, neighborhoods and community development,” she said. “It’s not something that the city can do alone. We need all hands on deck.”

Gary also said that the corporation is looking to attract additional members to its board. To learn more about the organization or to reach out, search for “South Lima Community Development Corporation” on Facebook.