Women's History Month: South Bronx Environmental Activist Now Spreads Her Green Ideas Worldwide
NY1's coverage of Women's History Month continues with an update on Majora Carter, a pioneering environmental activist making changes in her backyard in the Bronx and beyond. NY1's Shazia Khan filed the following report.
To view our videos, you need to
install Adobe Flash 9 or above. Install now.
Then come back here and refresh the page.
For more than the past decade, Hunts Point native Majora Carter has been working to make the South Bronx matter.
"I felt compelled to be part of the struggle that was going to help make my community a better place for me to live in, for my family, for my friends to live, but also prove that you didn't have to move out of your neighborhood to live in a better one," says Carter.
In 2001, Carter founded Sustainable South Bronx, with a mission to, in her own words, "green the ghetto."
In many ways, she has succeeded. NY1 last sat down with Carter in 2006, when she had just won the MacArthur Genius Award, one of many honors for her transformative work in the South Bronx.
Carter turned a once-vacant lot into a thriving waterfront park and created a green-collar jobs training and placement program.
She's also the visionary behind the South Bronx Greenway, a groundbreaking project designed to add 11 miles of bike and pedestrian paths and other public amenities to the area. Now under construction, Carter led the campaign to secure $50 million for the plan.
In 2008, Carter left Sustainable South Bronx and founded the Majora Carter Group. She now travels the world as a consultant.
"I realized, well, maybe now is the time for me to see if I could export this model that we've done so well with in the South Bronx and use it to help support other people," she says.
Carter stays close to her roots, as she works and lives in Hunts Point.
"The pressure to stay is all mine. I know no one would blame me if I left, because quite frankly in other communities there are the kind of nice amenities that people like more," says Carter. "You can find really healthy food stores, you can find the clothing stores, you can find cafes, you can find all sorts of things that you absolutely cannot find here. But that's one of the reasons why I'm starting here and why my next path is actually real estate development, to help build the kind of communities that I think is important for everyone to live in."
She's starting with her own.