Awww, you make us blush.
Community feedback and media coverage of our work
Why Kids Love Our Programs
Concrete Safaris helped me improve to eat healthy and do exercise. It helped my family to eat healthy and go outside.
-Boy, Age 12, 5th grade
Parents Rave About The Quality of Healthy Experiential Education
It's better than the medicine, getting these kids outside, it's better than the medicine. It’s really working.
-Parent of a City Surfer diagnosed with ADHD whose symptoms had reduced since joining after school
Thank you everyone for this opportunity [the end-of-semester camping trip] you have given my daughter. Great memories and showing her she to face her fears and go the distance. Priceless! I really love you guys!
-Robert Cruz, Destiny's Father
Thank you so much for a wonderful camping weekend! Michael had a great time and full of stories about all the adventures, including the "Courage Trail." I really appreciate your endeavors in providing the children with this rich learning experience. We couldn't have managed to go camping in this way, and I know he had so much fun with his peers!
Thanks again for all your awesome work - providing outdoor activity, gardening, fun, play, and delicious lettuce! Hope to see you next year in full form at PS 102.
-Cathy Finlay, Michael Doyle's Mom
My children get to explore and learn about helping their environment.
-Setan Doucoure, Mother of 4 City Surfers
Concrete Safaris' value to Heaven is very Educational, Respectful, Entertaining as well as Big Fun.
-Michael Brisco, Heaven's Father
Event & Volunteer Managers Love Our Organized, Easy & Fun Partner Packages
THANK YOU for letting us come and be a part of [the children’s] day! We did have a great time and think the work you all are doing there is amazing. We really value our partnership with Concrete Safaris and love that it's so easy for AOLers to get involved.
-Trista Myers, Event Manager, AOL
-Monica White, Team Leader
The group had an awesome time and we will for sure be back again- everything was so well organized and much appreciated!
-Lauren MacCallum, Events Coordinator, The Boston Consulting Group
Community Partners Praise Link Between Research & Program Delivery
Concrete Safaris highlights how existing open space, in this case NYCHA grounds, can be optimally used to provide fun and educational programs for inner city children right in their backyard. Mac has worked tirelessly to get this program off the ground building needed relationships with the community, schools, and NYCHA and then orchestrating large scale community events with a handful of staff and volunteers.
In our ongoing research at Mount Sinai on the built environment and its’ role in childhood obesity, we found that the majority of early school aged children in our longitudinal study did not participate in any structured physical activity programs. Concrete Safaris is exactly the intervention needed to remedy this dire situation. The organization is optimizing the built environment by making it more accessible to kids, providing trained staff educated in environmental science, and increasing safety by involving community members at various events throughout the year.
Children in Concrete Safaris log thousands of hours of outdoor play and calorie expenditure. Staff are also introducing children to a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, which aids in food acceptance. These are two issues that are often difficult to meaningfully address at well child clinical visits. I cannot say enough good things about what Concrete Safaris is doing for East Harlem children and how critical its efforts are with respect to the primary prevention of obesity, diabetes and heart disease.
Concrete Safaris' work has directly benefitted countless children, the schools, and the community at large and can help inform pediatric primary care prevention efforts moving forward.
Maida P. Galvez, MD, MPH
Associate Professor, Department of Preventative Medicine and Pediatrics
Region 2 PEHSU Director
Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
Politicians Value Community Investment in Nutrition & Lifestyle Programs
We thank Concrete Safaris for ... empowering children living in and around East Harlem's public housing developments. Your hands on approach to nutritional education has been a great service to our community and young people have a better understanding of where food comes from as well has how to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
-Matthew S. Washington, Chairman, Community Board 11
Concrete Safaris has been a critical partner to us, particularly on Youthbucks and other initiatives focusing on the nutritional and physical health of East Harlem’s children.... I personally want to thank Concrete Safaris for their efforts to ensure that East Harlem residents have access to high-quality, outdoor play and education in Manhattan’s neighborhoods and parks.
-Manhattan Borough Scott M. Stringer, now New York City Comptroller
I have watched Concrete Safaris grow over the past five years and have supported this organization from its early stages. As Chair of the City Council’s Parks & Recreation Committee, I commend Concrete Safaris for creating an event that gets my constituents out into the parks for an entire weekend. I echo the sentiments of Community Board 11’s unanimous approval, and am in full support of Concrete Safaris’ JungleGym.
-District 8 Council Member Melissa Mark-Viverito, now Speaker of the New York City Council
Learn from a Leader: How to Build a Community Garden in a Public Housing Complex, IOBY Blog: August 4, 2015.
Bloomin with Tyler Rose: Episode 3 – Mac Levine, Killing the Breeze: January 23, 2015.
Mac Levine Named First Female To Solo SUP The Hudson River, SUP The Mag: June 24, 2014.Sharon Levine attempts first solo female paddleboard down Hudson, amNewYork: June 5, 2014.
Greening the Concrete Jungle: Gorman Prize winner promotes urban environmental health, Columbia Public Health Magazine, Page 45, October 2013.
One Nurse's Review of JungleGym 2013, HealthCetera - CHMP's Blog, Center for Health Media & Policy at Hunter College (CHMP), October 11, 2013.
Assisted Housing Management Insider: Take 10 Steps to Create a Successful Community Garden for Residents: September 26, 2013
New Yorkers for Parks Newsletter, March 4, 2013
Ampleen: Interview with Concrete Safaris -- An Inner-City Kids Program that Promotes Healthy Living in a Green Way!, Nov. 20, 2012
New York Daily News: Nature program gets East Harlem students involved in the outdoors, October 23, 2012
Impacto Latin News: Programas Comunitarios de Manhattan Reciben Ayuda de Coca Cola, October 2012
STREETSBLOG.ORG: Strong Majority Supports Protected Bike Lanes at East Harlem Hearing, December 7, 2011
El Diario: Safaris de Concreto en pleno Nueva York, Noviembre 2011
Mount Sinai School of Medicine's Communities IMPACT Diabetes Center Presents "You've Got The Power"
Citizens Committee for NYC's New York City Is My Neighborhood Campaign, March 2011
NYC Department of Education: In Our Schools Today
The New York Times: July 22, 2009
Mattel Children's Foundation: January 9, 2009
The Good Fight on Sundance Channel