It’s not just about state-of-the-art technology to Greater Ridgewood Youth Council President Bob Monahan.
It’s about helping better the lives of area residents, young and old.
On Tuesday, community leaders joined federal, state and city elected officials at the GRYC building at 59-03 Summerfield St. in Ridgewood to cut the ribbon on the group’s new technology lab.
Funded by a $52,000 grant from Time Warner Cable, the space on the bottom floor was built specifically for the lab, which contains 16 new touch screen computers, four laptops and two smart-boards.
Monahan believes the space will be a hit with the approximately 2,500 children the group serves daily once the school year begins.
“It opens the door to the world for these kids,” Monahan said. “You can contact your relatives in Poland, you can talk to someone in Santo Domingo. It’s so wide open for these kids and that’s what we can offer them.”
Monahan added that people of all ages will benefit from the technology, from children working on school projects to elderly residents learning how to connect with their relatives over the internet.
“Our adult literacy program will be enhanced,” he said. “Our young adult internship program will come in and do their resumes and prepare their cover letters and research job opportunities. Our summer youth employment workers will also be in here doing their resumes.”
In May, Rep. Grace Meng (D-Flushing) was contacted by Time Warner Cable and was asked which area organization would be best suited for a technology lab.
At the ribbon cutting, attended by Borough President Melinda Katz, state Sen. Joe Addabbo Jr. (D-Howard Beach), Assemblyman Mike Miller (D-Woodhaven) and Councilmembers Elizabeth Crowley (D-Glendale) and Antonio Reynoso (D-Brooklyn, Queens), Meng said she knew immediately which organization she deemed fit for the grant.
“To bring it here, it would have the most impact,” Meng said. “So many of us take for granted the electronics that are present in our lives. We have to remember that so many kids don’t have access to them. If we want our children here in Queens to be the best equipped ... it’s a great start.”