December 3, 2010

Our new building: It's here!

--by George A. Jones, Executive Director

It's finished! Construction on Bread for the City's Northwest Center expansion is complete, and the Certificate of Occupancy has been granted. Today we are moving into our brand new building!

The newly expanded Northwest Center is now more that twice its original size. (See a set of construction photos in our Flickr feed here.) By the new year, our legal clinic will have its own offices for the first time, our social services will have private meeting rooms, and our new roof will have a green vegetable garden -- the first of its kind in the DC area!

Most exciting of all is our medical clinic, which is the first completed largescale project of the DC Primary Care Association's Medical Homes DC Initiative. Our medical staff is already preparing to operate in the new clinic, which has twice as many exam rooms, a bigger and better laboratory, and special capacity for services like vision screenings and dental care. In coming years, we will be treating twice as many patients, with three times as many patient visits.

The other evening, as we were closing up and showing some folks the new space, a patient told me: "People are so excited for this! It's a real positive motivation kind of thing. This place gives all kinds of respect to everyone; and when you get respect, you give respect back too. We need more of it, and now we'll have it."

Now the work of transition begins. There's lots to be done before the Center is fully operational. Fortunately, we have a generous community of supporters whom we can count on to see us through.

And you, too, can be a part of this great new community center -- literally! As the year ends, we will hang an Honor Wall in the main hallway of the first floor, right next to our food pantry, and it will proudly display the names of hundreds of people who've made it all possible. All gifts of $500 or more that are received by December 15th will appear on this Honor Wall.

Of course, all of this is made possible by a vast number of contributions, big and small. So please make a gift -- of any amount -- to our Capital Campaign today. (You can even make a wonderful holiday gift of your donation to Bread for the City's Capital Campaign! Just tell us in the comments of your donation form, and we will send a special holiday card to your friend or loved one, on your behalf.)

As we approach the end of this year, and the start of an exciting new chapter, I want to thank you for your inspirational support.

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