Brooklyn mom takes on gentrification with hip hop and dance

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BROOKLYN (PIX11) — It may look like an ordinary dwelling in the Bushwick section of Brooklyn but for Yazmine Colon, what’s happening inside 1009 Broadway is pretty extraordinary.

The grass roots movement is called Educated Little Monsters or E.L.M. and it gives local teens a place to go after school, keeping them off the streets and consumed with the arts.

“Bushwick is changing. As everyone knows gentrification is real,” explained Colon.

“It started feeling like I was a tourist in my own neighborhood and the kids, little by little had less and less to do.”

“I didn’t want my son to fall victim to the streets because there was nothing left for him to do, so we started ELM.”

The program specializes in dance, music and hip hop culture. In what some would describe as an opponent to gentrification and corporate meddling, E.L.M. relies heavily on donations and volunteers.

The formula makes it hard to stay afloat in a city where the cost of living can sometimes boggle the mind.

However, it’s a reality that’s not keeping colon and her “monsters” from pushing through.

To donate to the E.L.M. movement and help some of Bushwick’s most-promising teens find stability within the community, visit their website.

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