Congressman Chaka Fattah (D-PA-02) today cut the ribbon at Dignity Housing's latest development in Germantown --for which he delivered $190,000 in federal funds to assist homeless and abused women and their children.
It represents the third time in a week that Fattah, a senior member of the House Appropriations Committee, has delivered for projects in the Second District where he has secured federal resources to improve the lives of Philadelphians with commercial development, affordable housing, homeless and senior citizen services.
On Monday the Congressman joined Mayor Nutter and City Council members in West Philadelphia to dedicate improvements along the 52nd Street shopping corridor. Fattah secured $297,000 in transportation funds for the revitalization project that is drawing thousands of new and returning shoppers to "West Philadelphia's Main Street."
On Oct. 9, Fattah addressed the NewCourtland LIFE/Senior Health Center groundbreaking at 1900 W. Allegheny Avenue in North Philadelphia. Fattah, who has assisted and advocated for NewCourtland on numerous projects, helped secure federal New Market tax credits to advance the LIFE Center, which will provide low-income senior citizens with affordable housing, health care and supporting services.
At today's dedication, Dignity Housing surprised the Congressman with its Champion of Dignity Award "for your generous support of the Dignity Housing program and tireless efforts on behalf of low and moderate income communities and families." Executive Director Beverly Roberts said, "We recognize we couldn't do this without the support of Congressman Fattah."
Fattah secured funds through the Economic Development Initiative of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for the Dignity Housing Resource and Opportunity Center at 5151 Wayne Avenue, Germantown. Dignity, which has 31 units of housing within a block's radius for homeless and abused women, announced a new partnership with the People's Emergency Center for services to the homeless.
Fattah thanked Councilwoman Cindy Bass -- who was in attendance -- for her earlier work on behalf of Dignity as Fattah's senior staff policy advisor for Northwest Philadelphia.
"It is great to see the overall picture, and to see the marriage between the People's Emergency Center and Dignity House," Fattah said as he toured the computer center. "Access to the internet will allow women at Dignity to improve their life chances, to further their education, earn a GED. I'm just glad to be able to support this great work of Dignity."
In an earlier statement, Fattah said, "Ending homelessness is a priority for the Obama Administration and for all of us who care about the vitality of our city -- and Dignity Housing has been in the forefront of that effort for a quarter century. Tackling homelessness means providing decent housing and more -- a mix of social services and support to help low income families and individuals break the cycle of poverty. Congratulations, Dignity, for 25 successful years."
Congressman Fattah has a long relationship with NewCourtland and its nonprofit housing and senior citizen services efforts. His leadership supported the award of $10 million in federal New Markets Tax Credits allocated through the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation to spur private sector investment in low income communities including the NewCourtland LIFE/ Senior Health Center at the Allegheny Avenue site in North Philadelphia.
Fattah has been a leader in acquiring resources for four other NewCourtland projects in Northwest and North Philadelphia since 2004, including participation by the U.S. Housing and Urban Development Department and Federal Home Loan Bank of Pittsburgh.
NewCourtland at Cliveden, 62 units of affordable senior housing which Fattah helped dedicate at 315 W. Johnson Street in Germantown last year, included $4.1 million from President Obama's American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.