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Special Gift to Quincy Street Seniors is Right On Time for the Holidays

Gifts of Community and Compassion: Residents, neighbors, and friends in the Bed-Stuy area where Spike Lee’s 1989 “Do the Right Thing Way” was shot adopted the film’s title as their mission.

It’s well known that filmmaker Spike Lee knows how to “do the right thing.”
What’s little known is his recent effort, in partnership with Bed-Stuy’s Do the Right Thing Way Block Association, to make the holidays extra special for a senior citizen’s group.
Recently, Lee and the DTRTW residents donated a 65-inch Smart TV to the Quincy Street Senior Citizen Center, located just around the corner from the Stuyvesant Avenue block (between Quincy and Lexington), where Mr. Lee filmed his 1989 classic.

The Lee-DTRTW joint effort was a big visionary win for the non-profit Bridge Street Development Corporation. BSDC engages community participation through block associations to improve the community’s quality of life.
The organization’s successful senior services arm is based at the Quincy Residences, a model site for educational, social, and recreational programming for the building’s residents, seniors, and citizens from the surrounding community.
In 2020, before the pandemic closed the doors of Quincy Senior Residences, members of the Do the Right Thing Way Block Association were frequent visitors, volunteers, and supporters of the Quincy Senior Residence, Oma S. Holloway, BSDC COO, Bridge Street Development Corporation, told Our Time Press.

“As we slowly opened our doors again to the general public, DTRTW Block Association was one of the first community groups who returned not only to utilize the space for meetings and other activities but were also very committed ‘to be of service’ where needed.
“A few weeks ago, Sandra Williams, the DTRTW Association’s secretary, called to inform us that Spike Lee wanted to donate a new TV to the community room at Quincy Senior Residence for the Seniors. I was surprised by the generous offer because the 44” TV currently used was definitely in need of repair.”

This wasn’t Lee’s first donation, Holloway revealed. “Spike was responsible for donating our First TV to Quincy many years ago! When he was told that the community room needed a new TV, the request was granted immediately. This new SAMSUNG 65” Smart TV is a major upgrade, and our Seniors are absolutely thrilled!
“We are truly grateful and appreciate that our community and celebrity stakeholders continue to support our Seniors in Bed Stuy.”
The DTRTW Block Association hosted the very first TV screening at Quincy Street Senior Citizen Center. Williams, whose Stuyvesant Avenue brownstone was an essential location in the film, told the seniors, “get your popcorn and your favorite drink. The first movie to watch is Do The Right Thing! Spike made that entire movie here, and ‘Brooklyn became a star worldwide.”

“Mother Sister {Dee}, was in the window of my house. It was (the scene) where Ossie Davis gave her the flowers,” said Williams, who also recalled the party Spike hosted on the block for the film’s 10th-anniversary party, “and Ms. Dee and Mr. Davis, along with Samuel Jackson and Rosie Perez showed up” and celebrated with hundreds in the closed street.
“The screening went well,” Williams told Our Time Press. “The seniors were happy, excited, and thankful.”


“A lot of urban issues dealt with in that movie are still relevant today, like getting along with each other,” she told Our Time Press. “A lot of good things came out of that movie. Spike has never forgotten us.”
Ms. Holloway informed that the DTRTW Block Association is an active participant in an array of BSDC projects, including “the Bed Stuy Works Alliance of Resident and Block Associations; their annual beautification event, Flower Bed Stuy; and collecting school supplies for young people in Puerto Rico who were devastated by Hurricane.”
-Fern E. Gillespie and OTP Staff