Project HOME in the News | Project HOME

Project HOME in the News

 

Mayor Nutter, Governor Corbett, and a host of other officials helped break ground today for a new wellness center in North Philadelphia that will bring a host of services to the community.

The neighborhood around 21st Street and Cecil B. Moore Avenue is in a part of the city that doesn’t attract a lot of new development, so the construction of this state-of-the-art health center, fitness center, senior center, and pharmacy was greeted with a celebration.

 

It's not your typical Martin Luther King Day of service event.  A coalition of groups is using the holiday to enroll people for health coverage in the basement of Bright Hope Baptist Church in North Philadelphia.

Jennine Miller, Director of Advocacy and Public Policy at Project HOME, said this is part of a big push to enroll people before the March 31st deadline.  By then, people must have coverage or risk a penalty.

 

Helping the homeless one sale at a time. That’s the mission of a thrift boutique in the trendy neighborhood of Fairmount.

The shop opened less than a year ago and is already a popular place for fashionistas. The more the store sells  — the more they can help.

At the HOME Spun Resale Boutique in Fairmount, Philadelphia’s most fashionable can literally window shop!  Inside the racks are full of bargains on everything from clothing to accessories.

 

As the region endures potentially life-threatening cold temperatures for those spending long periods of time outdoors, local organizations are ramping up their efforts to make sure Philadelphia’s homeless community stays safe and warm through what meteorologists are calling the coldest temperatures the city has seen in nearly two decades.

Local homelessness and poverty advocacy organization Project HOME operates a 24/7 Homeless Outreach Hotline. Project HOME spokesman Laura Weinbaum says people can call the hotline if they see anyone out on the streets that may need shelter.

 

A long profile of Project HOME co-founder Joan Dawson McConnon from Drexel University's LeBow College of Business.

 

More than 100 advocates for the homeless gathered in Philadelphia Thursday evening to memorialize people who died on the streets this year.

Sister Mary Scullion, founder of the housing nonprofit Project HOME, said Pennsylvania could combat homelessness by ensuring that all residents have access to health care coverage. According to her group, 127 homeless and formerly homeless people died in 2013.

 

DO ME A FAVOR: After you finish this column, spend the day keeping track of how many homeless people you see.

Look at the man huddled in the corner in the concourse between Suburban Station and City Hall.

Look at the frail young man rocking back and forth on the cold pavement outside the Dunkin' Donuts on Market Street.

Look at the woman with a toddler holding out a paper cup for spare change on Walnut.

And then ask yourself: How is it that we, a civilized society with great minds and deep pockets, still have people living and dying on the streets?

 

Violinist Shandi Beardsley played Pachebel's Canon in D Minor, a personal favorite, as volunteers took turns at the microphone reading the names of 127 homeless and formerly homeless people who died in Philadelphia in 2013.

 

In a triangular block where Fairmount Avenue merges into Ridge Avenue in North Philadelphia, another milestone for Project HOME is rising.

Workers are hurrying to finish the $16 million JBJ Soul Homes, a 55-unit apartment house for low-income and formerly homeless people.

Project HOME got its start 25 years ago, running a wintertime shelter for homeless men. Now, it's one of the most active nonprofit developers in the city.

 

Project HOME serves homeless people in Philadelphia year round and, on Christmas, it offers them a Catholic mass, right at the main shelter in Fairmount, drawing people from all walks of life.

Sister Mary Trainor opened the service, saying there was no better place to celebrate the holiday:

“It’s all about hospitality and our desire to give a home to one another as we gave a home to Jesus in our world.”

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