Hyde Square Task Force Celebrates Newly Renovated Youth Community Development Center

The Hyde Square Task Force celebrated their newly renovated Youth Community Development Center in a grand reopening ceremony in Jamaica Plain’s Latin Quarter on Jan. 31st.

Hyde Square Task Force (HTSF) members were joined by donors, youth leaders, and community members who celebrated the new space with a ceremonial ribbon cutting. The $2.5 million project will allow HSTF to better serve more than 1,200 youth each year through Afro-Latin arts, civic engagement and college success programs.

HSTF youth leader Jonathan Vo cuts the celebratory ribbon alongside his Hyde Square Task Force peers.


Left to right: State Rep. Jeffrey Sanchez, D-Boston, Melissa MacDonnell, Executive Director of the Liberty Mutual Foundation, Gary Morton of Liberty Mutual, Celina Miranda, Executive Director of HSTF, and Klare Shaw, Director of Programs of the Liberty Mutual Foundation.

  • Peppy

    I hope they start work on their abandoned church, soon. It’s been an empty eyesore for more than ten years now.

    • David

      agreed, they need to do something already.

    • Lisa Marie Garver

      wait a minute….I remember the city saying they were gonna destroy that church and it wasn’t hstf property. It was a legit church..I’m gonna google the details on this.

      • BettyV

        That’s hilarious. Please provide us with the source of this oddball claim of yours.
        Thank you.

    • Lisa Marie Garver


      They bought it 3 years ago and they are a small npo. https://www.hydesquare.org/blessed-sacrament-campus/blessed-sacrament-campus-project/

      And yea, they’ve been using it. Even if it makes your eyes sore, (idk why) it’s being utilized as in, not abadoned. 🙂

      • Jamison

        Ahh, check yer facts, girlie. They are Not using the church for Anything (did you even bother to read the links you so impressively supplied?). The grounds are being used, not the church.
        The building has been opened up once and only once since the Task Force bought it, for the benefit of politicians & the press; then they locked the doors because the building is not safe. But maybe you’re privy to inside info like what’s her name who is positive that rents from drum circle groups will pay for upkeep? If so then I apologize.
        Perhaps the million or two it will take to just stabilize the structure would be best put towards programs that directly help the youths who need that help NOW, not in twenty years after they’ve spent ten million dollars fixing the building.

        • Lisa Marie Garver

          I am not privy, I’ve read those articles, it was being used for rehearsal and also a performance. Im all about housing and taking care of kids needs but I haven’t seen any numbers on what it would take to renovate and what actual numbers could be brought in, but I can gauruntee that the youth of HSTF and the Hyde/Jackson community would greatly benefit from a multicultural art/performance center.

          Its not up to me wht HSTF does with its holdings, but at least I’m saying something positive instead of whining about it “being an eyesore”

          HSTF helps youth NOW so I don’t think there is any concern about that not happening. If they were renovating, I would imagine they would get funding specifically for historic renovations, etc. It wouldn’t be taking away any money that goes toward programming.

          That I do know, because I have been involved in community centers and youth arts programs since I graduated Berklee in 2011.

  • Hugo_JP

    I’ve seen the church from the inside and spoken with folks at the Task Force – converting the church to a cultural/performance center is a nice idea but would require a HUGE investment – and meager returns.
    A rational organization would see the benefit of selling the church to a developer and letting it be converted to condos. The Task Force would receive a huge financial boost to support its programs in their newly renovated home.

    • David

      definitely! make it condos or something! there plenty of people that would like to buy condos out there. do they have parking?

    • Peppy

      I agree that they should sell the building and let someone with the means and the desire develop it. I think it’s irresponsible to just sit on it like that. The longer it stays empty, the more it will deteriorate, and at the more it will cost to redevelop. I’m not sure what the benefit is to the community to just let a gigantic parcel in the middle of Hyde Square sit vacant for going on 2 decades.

    • Lisa Marie Garver

      I know you all know how I feel about condos so I will leave it at that… plus, HSTF is an npo so they couldn’t make that much of a profit and it would have to align with their mission in order to fit with fed. tax laws.

      What would be COOL is if JPNDC and HSTF got to gether to rennovate the church. I really dig the venuw thing. They already had a bunch of concerts outside of it last summer.

      Perhaps a portion of it could be rented for businesses and/or artist studios… that would be good. Thanks for helping me think of it my dear old neighbor/frenime

  • Malena

    I think a cultural/performance center in Jamaica Plain would be an awesome addition to our neighborhood. It would generate tons of revenue from rentals. Let’s face it, Spontaneous Celebration is too run down for nice events. Maybe they can join forces with the Task Force and sell one of the properties to fund a brand new, state of the art cultural/performance center. A model for this is the Villa Victoria cultural Center in the South End. Their problem though is lack of parking. That would need to be taken into consideration for any new building in JP. An idea like this is one that people could get people excited and involved.

    • Spraguely

      I agree that community space would be “awesome”, be highly beneficial to JP, and the preferred use of the ‘space’. You sound like you’re familiar with the financials at the HSTF, so let me ask you a question: exactly how much money would ‘rentals’ generate? And, would ‘rental’ fees be enough to pay the mortgage plus the millions in repairs/renovations necessary at the falling down church? My guess is those fees wouldn’t even cover the heating costs. And to make matters worse, potential Federal money that might benefit poor people is going to dry up in the next four years. Way to go, bernie-bros.

    • Jamison

      So let’s see the proof of your claims, melania. If what you’re saying has ANY truth then it shouldn’t be too hard to back it up. Unless you made up all that stuff to try to sound intelligent. Oops; it had the opposite effect.

    • Jamison

      STILL waiting 🙂 to hear where you got this important info that you base your very ‘interesting’ claims on. Please share.