The Community Youth Athletic Center is a free, all volunteer, non-profit program serving at-risk youth in National City, California year round. In order for youth to participate, they must abide a strict code of conduct and behavior in the gym, at home, in school and in the community. The Center also provides tutoring and mentoring programs for the youth. The Center has 25 to 40 participants at all times.
The Center provides amateur boxing and mentoring. They help at-risk youth build self-confidence, develop discipline and teamwork. They provide the necessary support. Their mission is "To provide underprivileged and at risk youth with a constructive alternative to self defeating behavior through an athletic and mentoring program." In fact, in 1997 local law enforcement and the San Diego District Attorney's Office noticed that CYAC is indeed a realistic prevention, intervention and diversion measure for at-risk youth. They recognized this program has been successful in providing an intelligent alternative to criminal behavior.
All sounds good, follow me over the flip for the problem...
The problem is National City declared this Center, along with many other places "blighted." The reason: They want to take it (under eminent domain) and give it to developers to build luxury condos. All in the name of "economic development" and "generating more tax revenue"
National City had, due to huge public outcry, decided to take the Center out of the designation. But they re-enacted it shortly after, and re-authorized the use of eminent domain for 10 more years.
This is abominable to the nth degree, and it doesn't end here. The Center filed a lawsuit in a California Superior Court after the designation was re-enacted, and it was dismissed on a technicality. The reason? A legal notice published in the back of two area newspapers had a date off by one business day. The Center is appealing
Not only are they robbing the owners of the American dream, and the kids of their hopes, but no amount of "just compensation" is going to make up for the Community Youth Athletic Center. The owners make no money off of this, and get nothing other than the satisfaction from helping kids find a better life, and the community certainly benefits from the Center being there
Let's save the gym! The fight is just beginning. If you'd like to get involved, visit http://www.cyacboxing.org or call 619.474.CYAC (2922) and ask what you can do to help!