Located two miles north of New York City’s Bronx border, New Rochelle is the seventh largest city in New York State with a population of more than 79,000. Founded in 1688 by French Huguenots, the city has a rich and celebrated history and currently boasts an ethnically diverse community. Recent Census statistics show that non-Hispanic Whites make up approximately 48.5% of the population, Hispanic or Latino residents comprise 27.6% and Blacks or African-American individuals represent 17.9%. Accordingly, New Rochelle is an ideal community to reap the benefits of the cradleto- career approach outlined in President Obama’s “My Brother’s Keeper Community Challenge.”
In a true partnership between the City of New Rochelle and the City School District of New Rochelle, MBK New Rochelle was formed to address persistent opportunity deficits faced by too many of its boys and young men of color. From that original partnership, MBK New Rochelle has expanded to include several dozen community organizations such as the New Rochelle Public Library, Boys and Girls Club of New Rochelle, Montefiore New Rochelle Hospital, the New Rochelle Chamber of Commerce and the New Rochelle Fund for Educational Excellence. Together, the City of New Rochelle, the City School District of New Rochelle and our community organizations comprise a three-legged stool and a solid foundation from which MBK New Rochelle can grow and prosper.
Included in the history of New Rochelle is the 1961 case of Taylor v. Board of Education of the City School District of New Rochelle, the first school desegregation case outside of the South. Using a segregated predominantly African-American school as its basis, a federal court ordered the desegregation of public schools in New Rochelle. This landmark decision was procured in part with the assistance of the famed Thurgood Marshall, who as an attorney, argued on behalf of the plaintiffs.
Most recently, New Rochelle has seen tremendous population growth with respect to its Latino community, which rose from 20% of the city’s population in 2000 to 27% in 2010. There is much untapped potential within the New Rochelle Latino community. One of the overarching goals of MBK New Rochelle is to better connect many of our newest residents to the city’s educational resources and extra-curricular opportunities and have them transition smoothly into the multicultural fabric of the city.
In essence, MBK New Rochelle is designed to tap into and enhance the rich history and great diversity that make New Rochelle so unique. Young people in New Rochelle, particularly African-American and Latino boys and young men, deserve the resources that will allow them to succeed in life. In turn, New Rochelle deserves to witness the benefits of seeing that all its residents reach their full potential. 1About New Rochelle