NBC Evening News for Thursday, Sep 29, 1977
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(Studio) Sweat equity means ability to get something done, literally, by sweat of one s brow. Also means poor people with little money but some muscle can use muscle, with little government aid, to get decent hsing.
REPORTER: John Chancellor
(NYC) In any city, NYC's South Bronx would be considered other side of town. But it is home of People Dvt. Corp., group of young people, mostly black and brown, who are working to reclaim property and people in area. PDC turns decaying tenements into decent living qtrs., with what they call sweat equity. [Edward "Moose" HOLMES - works here because he doesn't have job, doesn't mind working long hrs. Notes nickname Moose is because people say he works like moose. Says job keeps mind occupied; wants to build something here, because was raised here and doesn't want to see Bronx go down.] Sweat equity is government program that came to Bronx 3 years ago, through efforts of PDC; details noted. Man who conceived idea is Ramon Rueda. PDC's reclamation process in 1st of several bldgs. being rehabilitated described. [Building resident Danny SOTO - had no skills before project, but came into program and did own thing.] PDC's master plan is to take 9 blocks surrounding this building and turn them into middle-class neighborhood. [RUEDA - notes condition of area when PDC came there, and notes there's much hope here 3 years later.] PDC is ready to approach city about purchase of more property, which they want to turn into shopping center. There's also fish-raising experiment in progress; details noted. Realizing rest of neighborhood must be brought along if standard of living to be raised, PDC members give neighbors help. PDC demonstrates members can give direction to own lives, but it hasn't been easy. [RUEDA - cites problems with city bureaucrats, and reason PDC has succeeded where state and federal govts. have failed.]
REPORTER: Gerald Harrington