Monthly Archives: June 2012


Rebuilding Together

Rebuilding Together's Building a Healthy Neighborhood Philadelphia

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To read a story about this project on, click HERE.

Rebuilding Together, in partnership with the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation and Rebuilding Together Philadelphia, announced today that the Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation is joining Rebuilding Together’s Building a Healthy Neighborhood project in the Overbrook neighborhood in Philadelphia.

The Building a Healthy Neighborhood project recruits hundreds of volunteers, local leaders and officials to rehabilitate nearly 30 homes in the Overbrook neighborhood June 14 – 16. The work will address local families’ critical needs, including major interior and exterior rehabilitations, accessibility modifications and energy efficient upgrades. The volunteers will also participate in community clean-up and the installation of a new playground at the Overbook Environmental Education Center in partnership with Carter Oosterhouse’s charity Carter’s Kids.

The Building a Healthy Neighborhood mission is to demonstrate the positive effects of home and neighborhood revitalization on the overall health of homeowners, families and communities. The Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation has come on board as a partner, bringing along knowledge of the City after having participated in various housing projects in the past throughout Philadelphia. According to the Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation, the common theme of all of their past revitalization efforts has been to help strengthen the community by improving (or preserving) the housing stock and thus the lives of those within the community.

“We were excited for the opportunity to partner with Rebuilding Together on this project,” said Mimi Box, Executive Director of the JBJ Soul Foundation. “Upon hearing about the work they were setting out to do, we realized this build fits in perfectly with our model for community revitalization and incorporates the elements we look for in each build in which we participate: 1) the housing component – and here will affect the lives of 30 homeowners; 2) services and community support through the Education Center; 3) making the homes more energy-efficient; and 4) the very large volunteer component. Volunteerism is something that the JBJ Soul Foundation has long supported and is a cornerstone of our mission.”

“We are thrilled that the Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation will be supporting Building A Healthy Neighborhood in Overbrook with Rebuilding Together and Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation,” said Gary A. Officer, president and CEO of Rebuilding Together. “To see the momentum build among our sponsors and volunteers and know that the effort we are making will help sustain a landmark Philadelphia neighborhood in a healthy and viable manner is inspiring.”

“Creating safe and healthy living environments in the homes impacted by the Building a Healthy Neighborhood project helps bring vitality to families, neighborhoods and communities,” said Marshall Croom, chairman of Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation. “Our Lowe’s Heroes network of employee volunteers will be hard at work with community volunteers in Philadelphia to help make a difference for the families of Overbrook.”

Volunteers from Lowe’s, Wells Fargo, Citrin Cooperman, Rebuilding Together’s CapacityCorps alumni, Choice Hotels, and HGTV and DIY Network, will revitalize the Overbrook neighborhood and community center, as part of Rebuilding Together’s mission to provide a safe and healthy home for every person.


JBJSF Celebrates Groundbreaking of a New Building in Philadelphia

The newly renovated three-story Merrick Hall will encompass 15,000 square feet of residential space that will double the number of mothers and babies served, including service to pregnant teens. The building will include both transitional and permanent housing in a supportive living environment for the families.

Craig Spencer, Vice-Chairman of the Board of the Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation, spoke of the foundation’s relationship with the agency and announced its $100,000 commitment, specifically to support the permanent housing portion of the project. The Honorable Curtis Jones, Jr., City Councilman for the 4th District in Philadelphia, also attended the ceremony and extended greetings and congratulations.

In addition to the groundbreaking, the agency announced its new name, Northern Children’s Services. “Over the years, our organization has evolved greatly from a refuge and respite for children that was founded in 1853, to the comprehensive social service agency it is today,” says Tracey Lavallias, President and CEO, Northern Children’s Services. “Our name change to Northern Children’s Services reflects our core mission and response to the emerging needs of the children we serve and allows us to more effectively work throughout the region.”

Today, Northern Children’s Services is the oldest residential facility in Philadelphia and continues to assist children and families to achieve their maximum psychological, social and economic potential, while fully respecting the dignity and worth of each individual and the integrity of the family. “Although our name and logo have changed, our commitment to keeping children safe, strengthening families, and providing high quality services in the most compassionate, professional and cost effective environment of excellence remains the same,” says Lavallias.

For more information on the Merrick renovation, capital campaign or Northern Children’s Services, please visit their website.

To view photos from this event, please visit our Photo Gallery


A Night of Broadway Stars Gala

Covenant House A Night of Broadway Stars Gala

For more pictures from this event, click HERE

To watch the video introduction for Leo Carlin & Jon Bon Jovi that played at the event, click HERE

Jon Bon Jovi Receives Beacon of Hope Award;
Former First Lady Laura Bush Attended

NEW YORK, June 12, 2012 — Homeless youth working towards brighter futures had a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to perform with Broadway stars at Covenant House’s A Night of Broadway Stars gala on Tuesday June 12 on the stage of Frederick P. Rose Hall, Home of Jazz at Lincoln Center. A Night of Broadway Stars began at 6:00 pm with a cocktail reception. The show started at 7:30 pm, followed by a dessert reception with the stars.

Rock star and philanthropist Jon Bon Jovi ** received Covenant House’s “Beacon of Hope Award,” honoring his extensive support of the homeless young people striving to turn their lives around at the shelter for homeless, runaway and at-risk youth. **Leo Carlin, President of the Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation, was also honored with the Beacon of Hope Award for his long time commitment and work with Covenant House in Philadelphia.

“All kids need love, guidance and mentors who lead by example,” said Bon Jovi. “Yet some have had to grow up fast and have had more than their share of challenges. But thanks to organizations like Covenant House there is always hope.”

“Jon has been a friend to Covenant House for over 20 years, giving of his resources and time and talent to build new homes and new lives for homeless kids,” said Covenant House President Kevin Ryan. “Joining with Leo Carlin, The Soul Foundation has become a beacon of hope, leading the way in the fight against homelessness by providing not only compassion, but practical, long-term solutions. We cannot thank Jon and Leo enough for being such important members of our Covenant House family.”

This star-studded evening was hosted by renowned lyricist and composer Neil Berg, and included a full revue of performances by some of Broadway’s greatest talents, including 2012 Best Actor Tony nominee Jeremy Jordan and his Newsies co-star Capathia Jenkins, Ron Bohmer and Rita Harvey from Phantom of the Opera, Lawrence Clayton from Les Misérables, Rob Evan from Jekyll and Hyde, film and TV star Karla Mosley and Danny Zolli from Jesus Christ Superstar.

Olivia Harrison, wife of the great Beatle and philanthropist George Harrison, received the Casa Alianza Hands of Peace Award for her support of Casa Alianza (Covenant House) Guatemala. Her support has provided love, hope and protection to homeless youth in Latin America, helping to save thousands of lives. Ryan says, “No Covenant House 40th Year Anniversary would be complete without recognizing Olivia’s and George’s role in making our Latin American programs possible, and we are honored and blessed to thank her in this special way.”

Also honored for his service to homeless youth was Tom McGee, National Managing Partner of Deloitte Growth Enterprise Services. McGee received the International Board Service Award for his work as a driving force for change in the battle against homelessness. “Tom has been an incredible gift to our kids as a member of our Board, from sleeping outside of our New York shelter to raise funds and awareness for our kids, to traveling internationally to our sites to learn the issues and be part of real solutions to the problems our kids face,” said Ryan.

Ryan added, “It is also very appropriate that on our 40th anniversary, our Co-Chairs are Laura and Barbara Bush. Ever since President George H.W. Bush visited our kids over 20 years ago, three generations of the Bush family have championed the cause of our kids. Former First Lady Laura Bush and her daughter Barbara have continued the tradition by taking the time to know our kids and stepping up to help whenever our kids have needed their support.
“Covenant House has thousands of homeless youth working towards their dreams in six countries at our 21 locations every day – over 56,000 last year alone,” said Ryan. “Supporting A Night of Broadway Stars gives our kids a chance to make dreams come true … a chance to dream of jobs, of homes, of families of their own.”

To learn more about the event, visit

Founded in 1972, Covenant House is the largest privately funded agency in the Americas helping homeless kids, providing 24/7 crisis care and ongoing support at 21 facilities,, Covenant House NINELINE (1-800-999-9999) and