|This year, the U.S. House of Representatives allowed members of Congress to recommend specific projects in their communities for direct funding through federal appropriations. Each member was permitted to recommend 10 projects for the Appropriations Committee to consider for funding. The Committee makes the final determination on whether a project is funded.
Our office received almost 60, high quality applications from nonprofit and government organizations across PA-05. All the projects would have had a great benefit to our community, which made the decision as to which ten to submit incredibly difficult. After exhaustive deliberation, the projects listed below were recommended to the Committee for consideration.
Keep an eye on this page in the future for information about the FY 2023 Community Project Funding request process.
Chester, PA Medical Facility Expansion Project to Improve Opioid Use Disorder and Mental Health Treatments in an Underserved Community: $1,000,000
AIDS Care Group
2304 Edgmont Avenue
Chester, PA 19013
Delaware County has one of Pennsylvania's highest instances of STDs and opioid use disorders. It ranks third out of the commonwealth's sixty-seven counties in its number of cumulative cases of HIV. The City of Chester, within Delaware County, has been designated as a medically underserved area by the federal government since 1975. The city is currently seeing a rise in STDs, hepatitis C, opioid use disorders, mental health disorders, and HIV/AIDS among its population. In part, the rise in HIV/AIDS is connected to the opioid addiction crisis, as intravenous drug use increases risk for getting or passing on viral infections including HIV and AIDS.
AIDS Care Group s a community-based provider dedicated to combatting Chester's HIV/AIDS crisis since 1998. This project will help the organization modernize and scale up its original medical care facility in Chester to create a clinical center for opioid use disorder treatment and mental health services. This capital expansion will allow the organization to expand clinical services to chronically underserved populations in Chester and the surrounding communities that need treatment for opioid use disorders. An expanded facility will enable AIDS Care Group to offer desperately needed on-site services, such as medication-assisted treatment, psychological services, and medical treatment.
Community Partnering Program: $475,000
201 W. Front Street
Media, PA 19063
The Delaware County Community Partnering Program (CPP) will empower neighborhoods and build community. Likened to the local government version of Kickstarter, this proven model of local investment provides a platform for neighborhood groups to develop, resources, and execute small projects and initiatives that build trust, create capacity, and empower residents. Projects are generated by neighborhood residents and community groups, and can include (but are not limited to) community gardens, pocket parks, bicycle facilities, pedestrian enhancements, elder transport coordination, snow removal for physically restricted persons, or education initiatives such as energy awareness school programs. The CPP is specifically designed to provide outreach to historically underserved communities who have borne the burden of disinvestment for many decades. The program lowers the barriers to accessing community-based improvements and places a high value on participation from residents who would have more agency in local decisions. Through this program, residents of our neighborhoods can work together to take ownership of and enhance the places where they live, work, and play through their participation in locally developed and executed projects.
Community Watershed Education and Freshwater Mussel Hatchery at Bartram s Garden on the Tidal Schuylkill River: $925,000
John Bartram Association (dba Bartram's Garden)
5400 Lindberg Blvd.
Philadelphia, PA 19143
Decades of racist municipal and corporate disinvestment and industrial use perpetrated generations of environmental and health inequities and effectively barred the largely Black neighborhoods in Southwest Philadelphia from accessing the local Schuylkill River. In 2019, a series of community meetings identified community stewardship, STEM-based youth-enrichment opportunities, and watershed health as neighborhood priorities as residents grapple with the long-term economic and health impacts of industrialization and environmental injustice.
Since 2015, Bartram's Garden, a non-profit organization in SW Philly, has invested in free recreation and environmental remediation to increase access to the Schuylkill. Since then, more than 20,000 residents have enjoyed river access; recreation like boating, fishing, and birdwatching; and engagement with environmental education and environmental restoration. The Community Project Funding will allow construction of a watershed education center and a production hatchery for native freshwater mussels, which serve as natural water filters. With more than $4 million already committed towards its design and construction, the CPF funds will allow the project to be completed and help this community access a beautiful natural treasure.
Darby Free Library Restoration & Resilience Initiative: $981,562
Darby Library Company
1001 Main St.
PO Box 164
Darby, PA 19023
The Darby Free Library, established in 1743, is the oldest library providing continuous service in the country. A recent inspection, however, revealed that the library needs urgent structural repair to its brick masonry and foundation. This Community Funding Project grant request aims to create a resilient public building that can better serve its community members by renovating this historic structure to meet modern standards. The funding would be used to lower operating costs by installing the energy efficient solar panels, make the library accessible to disabled patrons and repair the failing roof and gutters.
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the Darby Library has remained fully open to the public – with strict CDC guidelines in place - and is the only library within Delaware County system to do so. This decision was made because Darby Library patrons need more than just books. The Darby Library offers the only free access to computers, printers and internet in the community. These resources are used daily to connect residents to information such as employment opportunities, government assistance programs, email, and homework - all of which are nearly impossible to complete on a smartphone. The library is located within walking distance of four schools and provides a safe and inclusive environment for community members both young and old.
F. Amedee Bregy Schoolyard Improvement Project: $425,000
The Trust for Public Land
1608 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103
The F. Amedee Bregy School
1700 Bigler St.
Philadelphia, PA 19145
The Trust for Public Land, in conjunction with F. Amedee Bregy School, plans to transform a paved, asphalt schoolyard that increases urban heat, flooding, and safety concerns into a climate resilient, community space. The Trust for Public Land engaged students, faculty, families, and the community to envision how this expansive, but neglected, public schoolyard could be reimagined as a park and play space. The Trust then incorporated this input into a concept design for a new community and educational park that would include play equipment, basketball courts, seating, shading, an outdoor classroom, and new greenery.
F. Amedee Bregy School’s student population, which is 100% economically disadvantaged and 85% students of color, represent groups that bear the brunt of the effects of climate change and traditionally have had lower access to play and green space. Close to nine thousand people live within a ten-minute walk of Bregy, and more than a quarter of these nearby households are low-income. These communities, and all of South and Southwest Philadelphia, will benefit from the creation of this essential and accessible public good.
Mobile Crisis Teams: $650,000
201 W. Front Street
Media, PA 19063
Delaware County is on the forefront of efforts to address the mental and behavioral health challenges of residents who find themselves in the criminal justice system. The Mobile Crisis Teams would be stationed at the County’s Emergency Services location and be dispatched in conjunction with law enforcement when there is a known or suspected involved person suffering from mental illness. This project will divert these persons into treatment, with a prioritized admission, to properly address their underlying needs. As our national conversation around policing continues, too often a mental health crisis is turned into a law enforcement issue that can have dangerous consequences. This program intends to reverse that trend by providing the community with a mobile crisis team that could quickly and appropriately respond to mental health emergencies.
Philadelphia Navy Yard Workforce Development Initiatives Program: $528,000
PIDC Community Capital
1500 Market Street, Suite 3500
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19112
4701 Intrepid Ave.
Philadelphia, PA 19112
PIDC Community Capital, a non-profit organization dedicated to fostering job-creating development in Philadelphia, will work with the West Philadelphia Skills Initiative (WPSI) to identify, train, and connect unemployed and underemployed adults to quality wage employment, increasing stability and economic opportunity for working Philadelphians. The collaborative allows PIDC to replicate key aspects of the WPSI’s nationally recognized and proven model to build talent pipelines in adjacent communities, where 95% of participants are connected to employment upon successful completion of the program with an average starting hourly wage of $17.94/hour and an 84% 12-month job retention rate.
PIDC will work with WPSI to create a program at the Navy Yard, a 1,200-acre redeveloped work community hosting 15,000 employees and 170 employers in South Philadelphia. PIDC has identified jobs that are “future proof” and that will not be eliminated by the rapid acceleration of workforce automation due to the impacts of COVID-19 and are in industries that have remained relatively stable during the pandemic. PIDC has developed several workforce solutions that are based on employers' needs in diverse industries including shipbuilding, manufacturing, life sciences, medical services, and facility/grounds maintenance and focused on connecting Philadelphians to quality jobs.
PhilaWorks Workforce Training for Formerly Incarcerated Philadelphians: $1,000,000
Philadelphia Works, Inc.
1617 John F. Kennedy Boulevard
Philadelphia, PA 19103
3144 Passyunk Ave.
Philadelphia, PA 19145
PhilaWorks will work with CEO Works Philadelphia to train and give job experience to the formerly incarcerated who need a second chance to get back on their feet. This transitional work experience will provide participants with the knowledge, experience, and training necessary to build lasting attachments to the workforce and become permanently employed.
The project will provide 125-150 formerly incarcerated Philadelphians with immediate employment upon release from incarceration working at the site of the now shuttered PES oil refinery in the heart of southwest Philadelphia. The participants will assist with the clearing of the blighted refinery land, performing litter abatement, graffiti removal, and landscaping services to produce a fully green, eco-friendly space. Each day, participants receive feedback on their work performance using CEO’s proprietary performance assessment tool “Passport to Success” to help participants transition back to the world of employment. Participants in this program will have access to employment services and a network for career opportunities such as advanced training and credentialing.
This innovative and evidence-based program transforms a first job out of prison into a practice field for changing habits that would otherwise perpetuate involvement in the justice system. CEO Works model has undergone rigorous evaluation and demonstrate statistically significant impacts on both recidivism and long-term employment. In a randomized control trial evaluation conducted by the independent research firm MDRC, CEO Works was found to reduce rearrests, reconviction, and re-incarceration of recently released individuals by statistically significant margins of 16-25% in the three years following release from prison.
Restoration of the Historic Lansdowne Theater: $1,500,000
Lansdowne Theater Corporation
31 N. Lansdowne Ave.
Lansdowne, PA 19050
This Community Project Fund grant would be used to rehabilitate the 1927 Lansdowne Theater in Lansdowne, PA into a regional concert hall and spur investment in this historic inner ring suburb just west of Philadelphia. Long suffering the effects of disinvestment, this is the largest economic development project in the community’s history. The $13.5 million of the $15 million needed to complete the project has been raised from individuals, foundations, and local and state sources, showing great community support. With the CPF funds, the project will be ready to start immediately and will implement capital repairs, replacement of mechanical and HVAC systems, roof repairs, restrooms, rainwater runoff system, theater seating, restoration of historic finishes and related equipment, labor and materials within an historic theater and proposed one-story addition.
The project is anticipated to create 51 jobs in the operation of the theater, 100 permanent jobs in businesses nearby in addition to over 100 jobs for the trades during construction. Once completed, the theater will create opportunities for students in the local school district for enhanced educational programs through internships and access to myriad genres of music. This transformational investment is integral to wider commitments among local, county and state government, as well as the area community, to create an anchor to restore, enhance and spur economic activity in this blighted urban commercial corridor surrounded by low-income communities, disproportionately of color.
Upper Darby Community Center Green Roof: $975,000
Upper Darby Township
100 Garrett Road
Upper Darby, PA 19082
The new Upper Darby Community Center Green Roof will transform a completely paved corner parcel of a densely suburban area into much needed green space. The Community Center, which will host this green roof, is a multi-story structure that will be utilized for recreation, learning, and community events. This center will service residents of all ages within the community and is within walking distance to a large portion of the population. The multi-leveled green roof will be the focal point of the center and will serve as an educational tool, community event space, and climate resiliency project. The first level will include an area for children to learn gardening and basic horticulture. The larger second level will incorporate an outdoor passive recreation and event space. This will include outdoor seating, a council ring fire pit, a stormwater management rain garden, and a shade structure.
To protect against any appearance of self-dealing, Congresswoman Scanlon submitted written certification to the Committee that neither she nor her family had any financial interest in any project submitted. Click here for copies of those disclosure letters.