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March 5, 2002

ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA TO BUILD
TRANSITIONAL HOUSING AND COMMUNITY CENTER

Anthony Cardinal Bevilacqua, Archbishop of Philadelphia, presided at a groundbreaking ceremony for a Transitional Housing and Community Center in the Kensington section of Philadelphia on Tuesday, February 26, 2002. This is the first major project of the Archdiocesan Office for Community Development, which Cardinal Bevilacqua established one year ago this month.

Cardinal Bevilacqua was joined at the groundbreaking by The Honorable John Street, Mayor of Philadelphia; The Honorable Frank DiCicco, Philadelphia City Council; The Honorable Richard Mariano, Philadelphia City Council; Reverend Monsignor Timothy C. Senior, Secretary for Catholic Human Services; Mr. Nicholas A. Giordano, Chair of the Office of Community Development's Advisory Committee and Reverend Monsignor Edward M. Deliman, Pastor of Visitation B.V.M. Parish in Kensington.

Transitional Housing and Community Center:
Located at intersection of Kensington and Lehigh Avenues, adjacent to Visitation B.V.M. Parish in the Kensington section of Philadelphia
Transitional Housing: 18 units of housing for mothers and children coming from shelters and seeking permanent housing
Community Center: three floors of multi-purpose rooms and offices and regulation-size gym
$3.5 million project with funding coming from federal, state and city sources
Completion scheduled for January 2003

Background:
Cardinal Bevilacqua announced the establishment of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia Office for Community Development at a news conference on February 28, 2001. The office was created in response to the Cardinal Bevilacqua's direction for the Archdiocese to become more active in efforts to revitalize the city. The mission of the office is to "help people help themselves."

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia chose the Kensington section of Philadelphia as the first targeted community partially because it had been the focus of Operation Sunrise of the Philadelphia Police Department and had also been the subject of city and church discussions over the course of two years for potential collaboration. It was also selected for its needs, its growing population of Hispanic and Vietnamese immigrants and the Catholic presence already in the area. The Office for Community Development plans to target other neighborhoods in the future.

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Contact
Donna Farrell
Broadcast and Media Specialist
215-587-3747

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