Residents & Alumni Stories | Project HOME

Residents & Alumni Stories

Shahida Parker Johnson speaking at the 30th Anniversary Gala

Below are remarks from Shahida Parker Johnson, a young adult resident at our Ruth Williams House at the Gene & Marlene Epstein Building, made at our 30th Anniversary Gala.

Good evening. My name is Shahida Parker Johnson and, like so many young people in Philly, I grew up in the foster care system and aged out, becoming homeless at the age of 19. Thanks to a friend, I learned about Covenant House, a shelter for homeless youth. 

Solomon Frazier speaking at the 30th Anniversary Gala

Below are remarks from Solomon Frazier, a Project HOME alumnus and current SEPTA employee.

Good evening, my name is Solomon Frazier. I am humbled and privileged to be here tonight to help Project HOME celebrate it's 30th anniversary.

I became a resident of Project HOME’s Hope Haven II in 2012. At that time, I had been in a recovery house for 9 months, trying to work on my addiction with very little support. When I learned I’d have to leave the recovery house, I started praying, “God I don’t want to go back out there. The odds are against me.”

Learn more about how Izzy was able to transform her circumstances by joining the Project HOME community and becoming an active member of the Alumni Program, Advocacy, and the Residential Advisory Board. Through hard work and support, she has been able to successfully navigate through her Project HOME journey and find stability in life.

Meet Benjamin, who came into Project HOME after hearing about our services, while on the streets battling addiction. From his days on the streets to volunteering with Advocacy, he has been able to leverage those experience and fulfill a childhood aspiration of helping others.

Meet Karen, who has worked with Project HOME for the last 7 years, in various roles serving our community.  Describing her time at Project HOME as "powerful, life-giving and a returning of her humanity'" She speaks graciously about her journey to Philadelphia and how she has grown through her experiences at Project HOME.

Eunid makes it clear that recovery is possible. A former resident and now Project HOME Alumni and Residential Service Coordinator,  she shares her testimony and sheds light on how the Project HOME community has helped her get back on her feet and off the streets.

Meet Zarah Teachy who joined the Project HOME community as a resident after meeting Sister Mary Scullion on the streets of Philadelphia years ago.  The chance meeting in the early stages of Project HOME's outreach efforts has led Zarah on a journey where she was able to achieve far more than she could ever imagine.

Because the dark doesn’t hurt so much, I am grateful for my little adapted room-darkened apartment at Kate’s Place. I am grateful for gloomy days when independent living gets a wee bit less painful, though I have to wear my prescribed black visor over glare goggles in any weather. I am grateful for screens that do not point at me, causing pain and brain problems. Especially, I am grateful for how the screen in the lobby can get turned off by a remote at the front desk if I have to be there.

Wes, a workshop leader in our candle-making program, shares how he has been able to use the principles of Project HOME to stay focused, balanced, and rooted in success.

Women of Change is a safe haven residence for women located at 20th and Arch Streets. (Photo by Project HOME)

Eileen McGovern first visited Project HOME’s Women of Change Safe Haven in 2015 with a group of Mercy Associates.  She currently serves as a receptionist there. 

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