Monthly Archives: April 2011



The first listening session will take place in New Orleans on Friday, April 29, 2011, where youth who have been served by local organizations Café Reconcile, Liberty’s Kitchen, Youth Empowerment Project and Tulane Drop In Center will attend. Additional cities where similar visits are planned include Atlanta, Houston, and New York City.

Currently, less than half of young Americans have the education, training and skills needed to compete in today’s workforce by the time they reach the age of 25. President Obama established the White House Council to bring all sectors together – individuals, business, community organizations, philanthropy, and government – to identify solutions to pressing issues, such as helping young people succeed, and make lasting progress on our national priorities.

After the roundtables, the youth participants can submit their most pressing issues and most inspiring solutions to the White House’s Your Future, Your Solutions: 100 Youth Strategies to Win the Future website. This effort enables the administration to hear directly from young people about the challenges they face and connect participants with Obama Administration officials through conference calls, web chats, and other opportunities.


Established in December 2010 by President Obama, the White House Council for Community Solutions will focus on an issue with critical near-term and long-term consequences for our nation’s health and economic strength – the responsibility of our society to ensure adolescents and young adults are prepared to live productive and prosperous lives. The Council is administered by the Corporation for National and Community Service. More information about the WHCCS can be found at

Your Future, Your Solutions: 100 Youth Strategies to Win the Future is an effort that enables the administration to hear directly from young people about the challenges they face. The initiative connects participants with Obama Administration officials through conference calls, web chats, and other opportunities. For more information go to

Check out the full story and recap of Jon Bon Jovi’s visit on

Watch the video and interviews from Jon Bon Jovi’s visit on Fox 8



“The Rights of Passage Program not only provides a safe place for homeless youth, but also provides skills and experiences needed to become independent and responsible adults,” said Mayor Michael Nutter. “The city is proud to be part of such an important and unique program.”

The Covenant House Rights of Passage program is based on the simple belief that all children have the right to pass into adulthood without being abused and homeless. The new housing development consists of 10 two-bedroom units, and includes outdoor recreational space, a lounge and computer lab, laundry facilities, and offices for program support staff. It will provide temporary housing for 20 homeless youths under the age of 21.

“Today is a celebration of the lives of the young people who will call this home,” said Jon Bon Jovi. “It’s a victory over the issues that forced them into homelessness and economic despair. Through the funding and creation of programs and partnerships like this, we can all support innovative community efforts to break the cycle of poverty and homelessness.”

The Rights of Passage apartments in Kensington are a direct response to the growing need for transitional housing for young adults in Philadelphia. Covenant House alone serves more than 500 young people every year through its Crisis Shelter, with limited resources for transitioning them to independence. This expanded Rights of Passage program is the final piece of Covenant House’s continuum of care that provides youth with both the joy of independence and the stability of a safety net.

“This is a dream come true for our kids, a chance to have a place to live and work and grow and build new futures for themselves after a tough start in life,” said Covenant House President Kevin Ryan. “We are here today because of the amazing support we have received from Jon Bon Jovi and his JBJ Soul Foundation, from Mayor Nutter and his staff, from our friends at the Connelly Foundation, the Horn Charitable Trust, and from thousands of private citizens who believe in our kids. In the midst of such difficult economic times, today is a great example of what we can accomplish together.”

Since 1999 Covenant House has been providing faith-based services to children suffering on the street. The Rights of Passage Program requires all residents to be employed for a minimum of 30 hours per week, participate in life skills classes, attend to daily chores, complete three or more hours of community service each month, and pay rent. Aftercare is also provided to graduates of the program.

“We are so excited to finally cut the ribbon and open these apartments for our kids,” said Cordella Hill, Executive Director of Covenant House Pennsylvania. “What started as a dream eight years ago is finally becoming a reality. This is a truly monumental day for homeless youth in Philadelphia.”

Funding for this project includes $400,000 from the City of Philadelphia Housing Trust Fund; $600,000 in Community Development Block Grant funds made available by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and distributed by the Office of Housing and Community Development, as well as large grants from Federal Home Loan Bank of Pittsburgh, Federal Home Loan Bank of New York, The Connelly Foundation, the David A. and Helen P. Horn Charitable Trust, the Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation and over $500,000 from individual supporters of Covenant House.

For more information on Covenant House Pennsylvania, please visit their Website


JBJSF Helps Fund Joseph’s House Thanks To Your Support

Joseph’s House, operated by Saint Joseph’s Carpenter Society, was originally scheduled to operate through March 31, 2011. Due to Camden’s overwhelming need for an overnight shelter, Joseph’s House wanted to remain open for one more month as the cold weather continued to hit the area. More than just providing a warm place to sleep, staying open an additional month will enable staff to continue to connect clients to the services they need to further stabilize their lives. It will also help Joseph’s House to continue their mission, which is to collaborate with individuals and organizations in providing opportunities for Camden’s growing homeless population to be safe, supported, and empowered to permanently improve their situations and circumstances.

Our Executive Director, Mimi Box, volunteered at Joseph’s House in February and wrote a touching account of her experience. To read her story, please click HERE.

For more information on Joseph’s House and how you can help by volunteering or donating, please click HERE.

Please visit our Joseph’s House Photo Gallery