Youth center to move in near pot club

A youth center founded to deter Chinatown kids from gang activity, offering everything from drug-abuse counseling to computer lessons, will soon begin moving into new Post Street digs across the street from a medical marijuana dispensary.

The nonprofit Community Youth Center, launched in 1971, recently won approval to renovate the building at 1042 Post St. it purchased for $4 million in December 2006, which would make room for youth programs from its scattered offices to move in, according to Cindy Tong, grants development manager.

However, it will also host youth counseling services — including for substance abuse — across the street from one of San Francisco’s well-established marijuana dispensaries, Grass Roots Clinic, at 1077 Post St.

“We’re aware it’s in our neighborhood,” said Sarah Wan, the center’s executive director. “When youths come to oursite, we do an orientation so they will know what’s going on in the neighborhood in terms of homelessness, drugs and so on.”

CYC first opened in Chinatown during the peak of the gang years, and has since moved out across The City, now offering youth services on Van Ness Avenue near Sutter Street and an employment-counseling office in the Richmond district, at Clement Street and Sixth Avenue, Tong said. Now it sees roughly 3,000 kids each year.

Youths are already familiar with the neighborhood, but an adult will escort younger members from the Post Street center to nearby bus stops to keep them safe, Wan said.

Although the scent of marijuana wafts up Post Street from Grass Roots, the dispensary does not let anyone through its doors without a note from their doctor, verified by the city of San Francisco, according to manager Kevin Johnson.

Grass Roots, which just reached its third anniversary, serves a few hundred clients per month, Johnson said.

As soon as the Post Street offices are renovated — a process already under way — programs for middle-school students will be the first to move in, including a “Computer Clubhouse” lab, counseling offices, classrooms and conference rooms. When the Van Ness lease ends in two years, most of the youth services will be under one roof on Post Street, according to Tong.

Post Street renovation plans met with little concern from neighbors, according to a report from planner Aaron Hollister. A handful complained about drums in the building associated with Chinese New Year festivities and asked CYC to install sound-muffling materials to dampen noise.

bwinegarner@examiner.com

Bay Area NewsLocal

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Construction in the Better Market Street Project between Fifth and Eighth streets is expected to break ground in mid-2021.<ins></ins>
SFMTA board to vote on Better Market Street changes

Agency seeks to make up for slimmed-down plan with traffic safety improvements

Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Currey (30) tallied 26 points and seven assists at Monday night’s game against the Lakers. (Chris Victorio for the S.F. Examiner).
Warriors overcome 19-point deficit to stun defending-champion Lakers 115-113

Ladies and gentlemen, the Golden State Warriors are officially back. Stephen Curry… Continue reading

U.S. Vice President-elect Kamala Harris speaks during an event to name President-elect Joe Biden’s economic team at the Queen Theater on Dec. 1, 2020, in Wilmington, Del. (Alex Wong/Getty Images/TNS)
Kamala Harris to resign from Senate

Bridget Bowman CQ-Roll Call Vice President-elect Kamala Harris will resign from the… Continue reading

A view of Science Hall at the City College of San Francisco Ocean campus on Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
CCSF begins search for next chancellor amid new challenges

‘It’s arguably the biggest single responsibility the board has,’ trustee says

Some people are concerned that University of California, San Francisco’s expansion at its Parnassus campus could cause an undesirable increase in the number of riders on Muni’s N-Judah line.<ins></ins>
Will UCSF’s $20 million pledge to SFMTA offset traffic woes?

An even more crowded N-Judah plus increased congestion ahead cause concern

Most Read