BROOKLYN GENTRIFICATION IS REAL

Brooklyn gentrification is real. On Thursday August 11th, community leader, entrepreneur and proud Brooklyn boricua Georges Torres, aka el “Urban Jibaro” shot a Facebook Video Live that went viral for days. The theme of the video? The gentrification of Brooklyn and its devastating impact on Puerto Rican small businesses.

The video starts with a shot of Graham Avenue | Avenue of Puerto Rico in Brooklyn.

Torres starts off by referencing a 2013 article stating that newcomers of the neighborhood were in favor of a “rebrand” of the iconic avenue endangering the loss of tradition and diminishing the cultural contribution of the Puerto Rican community in Brooklyn.

The Facebook caption of the video says it all:

Are you still ANGRY about potentially losing the “Avenida de Puerto Rico” in Brooklyn because our new neighbors want to “rebrand” and erase our contributions to this community? George Torres

SAN GERMÁN RECORDS

Then, Torres enters to a store called San Germán Records, an institution that has been operating for over 50 years in the neighborhood and that is now struggling to stay in business. As Torres peruses around the store to show live what the store looks like, and to urge his community to visit the business, he explains that San Germán Records is a jewel in Brooklyn. They have been organizing the Three King Day Parade for 20 years and, for the first time, they are struggling to put it together. George interviews the store owner who tells his powerful story of commitment to the community through the parade. As the video progresses, numerous people react. Some express outrage, other promise their support to the store through shopping visits, donations and exposure of the story.

HOW YOU CAN HELP

At the time of this article, the video had over 165K views and over 4K shares. This is an excellent time to keep the momentum alive. Take action. George is working to build a team of marketing volunteers to help out San German Records. The goals are threefold:

  • Getting media attention
  • Getting San Germán Records products online and work on their online presence
  • Working on the Three Kings Day parade organization

Make sure to follow Sofrito for your Soul for updates.

Get in touch with George Torres and San Germán Records.