News

Long-Awaited Service Center Opens on Northeast Side

People on the near northeast side of town turned out in droves for the opening of the Northeast Multi-Service Center. The facility was promised to them more than a decade ago and was finally built this spring. Laurie Johnson has more.

A small parade led by the drumline from Shadydale Elementary
led people to the doors of the Northeast Multi-Service Center.

Houston Department of Health and Human Services Director
Stephen Williams says they broke ground on the site in 2006.

“I think that what you have with this administration is a fulfillment of a promise that was made a long time ago. And we’ve done that in several communities here where we’ve actually brought up multi-service centers that people have been waiting on for more than a decade.”

The service center is in a park that already draws families and
visitors.
It has rooms for meetings, a demo kitchen for cooking classes,
a computer lab and an assembly hall and stage.

Michael Robertson with Health and Human Services says
they wanted to create a gathering place for the community.

“Well, we try to use the multi-service center as the focal point for all the Health and Human Services activities within this community. So we want the various things to emanate from here. We want to be the core to provide health promotion, health education to the community, wellness programs, programs for seniors, programs for youth, programs for mothers.”

The center already has 3,800 people enrolled in WIC.
They’re opened a Head Start program and plan to begin
classes and programs for seniors.

“So those types of things weren’t available—at least there wasn’t a facility in the community to do that with. So we’re here now on the park ground and we’ll be working with Parks and Recreation too as an extension of wellness to combine exercise programs with the human services and nutrition things that we do. So this is a real key part of this whole community effort.”

The city runs 10 multi-service centers in different parts of town
and an eleventh is under construction in south Houston.

Laurie Johnson. KUHF-Houston Public Radio News.

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Laurie Johnson

Laurie Johnson

Executive Producer for News

Laurie Johnson leads daily news coverage for HPM. She helps reporters craft and sharpen their stories on tight deadlines, with the aim of getting the most relevant and current information into local newscasts. Laurie is a native Houstonian who started her career at Houston Public Media in 2002. She is...

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