This site is best viewed in Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and all other major browsers. Use of Internet Explorer or Edge is not recommended.
Rain did not dampen the bright spirits or atmosphere of hope on Good Hope Road on Thursday morning, as Bread for the City CEO George Jones welcomed members of the community to the ceremonial groundbreaking for the organization’s new Southeast Center.
“This is a big day,” Jones began as he addressed the crowd of supporters and neighbors. He spoke about the incredible potential that the organization’s new facility will bring — at more than three times the size of the current facility across the street. The goal is to grow all existing programs and expand to new areas, all keeping within the mission of the organization. “We pride ourselves on providing services with dignity and respect,” Jones added.
The ceremony saw the community gather to celebrate the positive impact the center will have. Among the speakers were Deputy Mayor Courtney Snowden, who said: “We can build a more prosperous city with every single person in our city.”
Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton also addressed the crowd, beginning her remarks with an impassioned note of gratitude: “I want to thank Bread for the City for life-sustaining service to the District of Columbia.”
As construction begins for the 30,000 square foot center, which will be completed in 2020, plans are to help Washington, D.C. residents living with low income to develop the power to determine the future of their own communities.
Members of the MMD team were on hand to join in the celebration. Architect Michael Marshall also addressed the crowd, thanking the organization for the opportunity to design this important project. “We are proud to work with the Bread for the City team to design a facility that will help the organization fulfill its mission. The organization’s highly effective process and inclusive culture informed our design, and we are honored to collaborate with Bread for the City to deliver this high-quality facility to its aptly-named Good Hope Road location,” he said.
The modern, open design aesthetic planned by the MMD team will convey a feeling of welcome and transparency. Interior contemporary materials will serve to deliver a state-of-the-art social services facility.
Poverty affects nearly one in five residents and one in three children in the District. Poverty is also three times higher in Anacostia than all other D.C. communities. As a result, Bread for the City’s current Southeast Center has reached full capacity, and the organization has had to expand to meet the demand. The new Southeast Center will have the power to serve 20,000 clients through 75,000 total center visits each year.
The Southeast Center will enable the organization to provide the following comprehensive social services: food and clothing distribution, job-readiness training, mentorship, case management, paid internship opportunities, primary healthcare, dental care, vision care, behavioral healthcare, women’s wellness, civil legal services, urban agriculture, and community organizing.
The facility will include the following spaces: jobs center with smart classroom, computer lab, medical clinic, fitness center with locker rooms, private meeting space, counseling rooms, kid-friendly wait spaces, staff offices, community meeting rooms, food pantry, clothing room, legal clinic and rooftop garden.
“We celebrate this next chapter in Bread for the City’s story,” Board of Directors President Paul Taskier said, as members of the crowd cheered and gathered for photos.