Unveiling the New Leola Dorsey Community Resource Center
It was a full house at the grand opening and ribbon cutting for the Leola Dorsey Community Resource Center on Monday, October 2nd. Located near Guilford Road in Jessup, MD, a crowd of nearly 100 people gathered to celebrate the momentous occasion. Among the attendees were Howard County Executive Allan Kittleman, Howard County Housing Commissioner Peter Engel, State Senators Gail Bates and Guy Guzzone, and several other officials.
The three-story center is named after NAACP leader and highly respected civil rights activist Leola Dorsey. It is the first of its kind in Howard County and will serve the homeless as both a resource center for basic human needs and also as transitional housing. The first level of the building is the Grassroots Day Resource Center. The center is open three days a week for four hours a day. During this time, people are able to have a meal, take a shower, do laundry, and receive donated necessities from the DRC pantry. Medical, counseling, and social services are also available. The second and third levels of the building 35 single-room occupancy units. These units provide recently homeless people with a transition back into conventional housing. Each unit includes a bathroom and a small kitchenette. Also included on these levels are laundry facilities, lounges, and an outdoor terrace. The center will service an average of 100 to 120 people per day.
Several speakers at the ceremony paid tribute to Mrs. Dorsey, speaking fondly of her life and generosity. Dorsey’s son Charles, who was among several family members at the event, said his mother would have “loved this building.”
Photo: Members from the Volunteers of America Chesapeake, Howard County Housing Commission, and Harkins team.