The Chinese Methodist Center Corporation serves immigrant and low-income families in NYC Lower East Side community. We do so by providing affordable quality programs that addresses their needs in education, cultural, recreational, and social services. Through our services and support families can gain a foothold for a better life in New York City. CMCC is committed to this work because NYC, with its history of welcoming immigrants, is a portal to new opportunities and an improved quality of life.
The late visionary Chinese community leader and educator, Reverend Moses T. Lee, in response to the needs of an influx to Chinatown of new immigrants from mainland China after the historic Immigration Act of 1965, which enabled more Asians to enter the United States, founded the Mei Wah School in 1966. Reverend Lee understood the vital role of education and support services in helping struggling impoverished families to adjust to life in New York City. By establishing an After-School Program with only sixteen students in the basement of this church, Rev. Lee started what is now the oldest Chinese school and childcare facility in the Lower Manhattan Community, serving over 100 children daily and over 200 yearly along with its Summer Program.
Now an independent, non-denominational institution, the Mei Wah School is housed in the Five Points Mission building, which has served immigrants of the Lower East Side since the early 1800s. The historic building is currently owned by the Chinese United Methodist Church (CUMC), which provides the space for the Chinese Methodist Center Corporation. CMCC was formed and incorporated as a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization in 1976 and is a multi-service organization that provides a center for education, youth counseling, cultural, recreational, and social services for the metropolitan New York community.
The Chinese Methodist Center Corp’s core service is childcare programs offered through the Mei Wah School providing programs in preschool, afterschool, and summer camp.
The afterschool program, for students age 5 to 13 years, operates weekdays 2:30pm to 6:00pm. Students are taught to read and write Chinese and to appreciate the Chinese culture. The program also provides homework assistance, and for students in need of extra academic support, tutoring in specific subjects. Additional instructional time, recreation activities, and a freshly prepared hot meal round out their afterschool time.
Beginning in September of 2013, the Mei Wah School operates a satellite afterschool program at PS42, 71 Hester St. NYC, 10002.
The preschool program, for children age 3 to 5 years, operates Monday through Friday, 8:30am to 5:30pm, a full-day service providing a safe environment for preschool exploration and learning. Many working parents have come to view the Mei Wah Preschool as a “second home” for their children. The children spend a fun and educational day in a bilingual atmosphere. Language arts, math, science, arts and crafts, and music are taught in the Early Childhood curriculum. Nutritious snacks, fresh hot lunch and supper are provided and are prepared on site daily.
The summer program operates in July and August for children age 5 to 13 years old. Summer participants engage in a full day of fun activities and learning from 8:30am to 5:30pm. Certified teachers continue academic lessons through the summer to ensure children stay sharp for the next school year. Participants enjoy a weekly trip within the 5 boroughs of New York City. In addition to lunch provided by the NYC Summer Food Program, the Mei Wah School provides a freshly prepare hot meal daily, just as we do during the school year.