Staff Stories | Project HOME

Staff Stories

Dee Dee Risher is a long-time friend of the Project HOME community (and former staff member).  Her recent book, The Soulmaking Room, is a reflection on how we embrace our difficult experiences and struggles as a path toward wholeness.  You can purchase the book through Project HOME here. Here is an excerpt:


The Positive Pathway for youth and young adult homelessness

This past summer, Rachel Yoder, our strategic initiatives manager, visited the United Kingdon as part of the Transatlantic Practice Exchange to investigate new approaches to ending youth homelessness. The full report was recently released, and Rachel's portion, entitled "The Positive Pathway for youth and young adult homelessness" can be accessed below.

I Am Project HOME: Tricia Dressel

Since moving to Philadelphia almost 16 years ago, Tricia Dressel has had plenty of experience with nonprofits and community-based organizations. But when she had the chance to join the Project HOME staff three years ago as our Director of Human Resources, she knew it was an opportunity she had to seize. “I had always admired the work of Project HOME and the impact it had at a community level. And I saw such strong leadership in [co-founders] Sister Mary Scullion and Joan McConnon.”

We Belong to Each Other

Father Greg Boyle, founder of Homeboy Industries in Los Angeles and a dear friend of Project HOME, describes violence as stemming from “a lethal absence of hope.  It’s about [people] who can’t imagine a future for themselves.”

How can we infuse our system, our services, our communities, and our world with more hope? How can we cultivate spaces that are safe, rejuvenating, and restorative?

I am Project HOME | Leonard Buckner

This story originally appeared in our summer edition of News from HOME.

Leonard Buckner was six years old when his family came to Rowan Homes. His mother, Tanya, and her three children —Tanisha, Leonard, and Latanya—were among the first families to move into Project HOME’s residence for families in the St. Elizabeth’s neighborhood of Philadelphia. “She was excited to have a place to call our home,” Leonard remembers, “and the apartments were  beautiful—bigger than some houses.”

I Am Project HOME | Alexis Pugh

This story originally appeared in our winter edition of News from HOME.

With the grand opening of our Stephen Klein Wellness Center fast approaching, we asked members of the Project HOME community to speak to the importance and impact the facility will have on its North Philadelphia neighborhood.

I am Project HOME | Scarlett McCahill

When Project HOME decided to launch a new Social Enterprise program, it was clear that it would require a special jolt of energy. Scarlett McCahill was the person for the job.

Miss Tee (right) with Vernette Jones (left) and Helen Brown.

Several members of the Project HOME community participated in “100% Philadelphia,” a theater piece that was part of the Philadelphia Fringe Arts Festival.  One hundred different Philadelphians, representing the overall demographics of the city, shared their stories.  One of the participants was Priscilla "Ms. Tee" Bennett, who is teacher of the 2nd and 3rd graders at our Honickman Learning Center and Comcast Technology Labs.

Gwendolyn Young-El works with our Outreach Coordination Center.

In this new way of life, I am taught to strive for progress

Not perfection.

And so far I want to think I am headed in the right direction.

When I look back and see how far I’ve come.

I realize in my heart that just when I thought my life was over,

It really had just begun.

After I put down the drugs, and didn’t know how I was going to cope.

Amazingly, I was given two things, Faith and Hope.


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