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Effort Underway to Restart Rochester NAACP Branch

Patti Singer
pattisinger@minorityreporter.net

As a chaplain doing outreach ministry, Barbara A. Singleton Pradia came upon families seeking help.

She was surprised to learn that one potential resource, the local branch of the NAACP, no longer existed – and hadn’t for a few years.

“I thought it was a crying shame that we did not have a human rights division of the NAACP here,” said Singleton Pradia, who holds a doctorate in chaplaincy and theology. “We need that here.”

Singleton Pradia is part of a “meeting of the minds” as she called a group that is trying to reinstate the local branch of the NAACP.

The group is holding a membership drive to reinstate Rochester N.Y. Branch #2172.

A COVID-compliant event is scheduled for noon to 3 p.m., Aug. 22, at Paul Bianchi Park, 945 Emerson St. Physical distancing and masks are required.

The first 20 paid adult memberships will each get one free youth membership.

Voter registration also will take place.

Although the national NAACP website lists a Rochester branch, Singleton Pradia said it has been dormant since about 2010.

She said she has been in contact with the national NAACP about restarting the branch and has learned it is a process.

The goal for the membership drive is to recruit more than 100 individuals who will be active participants. Once the critical mass of members is reached, the branch still has to work with national and regional representatives to reestablish the Rochester branch.

Simgleton Pradia said the work started in January, months before the killing of George Floyd in police custody in Minneapolis and the calls for racial and social justice in response to his death.

Singleton Pradia said there are a number of roles the Rochester branch could take, such as advocating for education, criminal justice reform and health equity. She said the branch would work with other organizations that have the same goals.

“The NAACP is about partnerships,” she said.

For more information and updates on events, go to the Faceboook page of Rochester NAACP Branch #2172 or email catevaministries@gmail.com.