The new lobby of Christ House in Alexandria, Va.
ALEXANDRIA, Va. – Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Arlington’s (CCDA) “Christ House” in Old Town has undergone a massive renovation and upgrade, thanks to a partnership with HomeAid Northern Virginia (HANV), a non-profit that builds and renovates local housing and shelter facilities. Christ House provides transitional housing for 14 men, a food pantry, emergency assistance, and a nightly soup kitchen that has served dinner every night since 1974. The building dates to 1810.
Christ House challenged the renovation team to stay true to the property’s historic nature while upgrading it for today’s needs and uses. The top-to-bottom, three-floor facelift included upgrades to the kitchen, dining room, lobby, apartments and bathrooms. Additionally, throughout the building, there’s now new flooring, vents, thermostats, electrical, and lighting. Staff offices, meeting rooms a chapel were also freshened with new paint, flooring, lighting, and window treatments. Not only were key historic elements of the building preserved, but the soup kitchen was able to serve its nightly dinner throughout the renovation process, uninterrupted.
“The renovation of Christ House is an enormous morale lifter for our staff and for the people we serve, as well as particularly for the 14 men living in our transitional housing program today – and those in the future – as they work toward financial independence and self-sufficiency,” said John Croft, program director for Christ House. “Working with HomeAid helps us forward our mission of care and support and direct our resources to programs that are benefitting so many here in Arlington.”
HomeAid Northern Virginia builds and renovates homeless shelters and supportive housing facilities via the donated expertise, labor and resources of local homebuilders – enabling organizations such as Catholic Charities to focus their budgets and resources on supportive programs and services rather than building expenses. Under this partnership, HomeAid and covered 100% of the costs of the $83,000 renovation of Christ House, led by project “Builder Captain” K. Hovnanian Homes Virginia and 28 construction trade partners.
About Catholic Charities, Catholic Diocese of Arlington
Catholic Charities is the charitable arm of the Catholic Church in the 21 counties and seven cities of the Diocese of Arlington under the leadership of Bishop Michael F. Burbidge. Catholic Charities serves the poor and vulnerable who live in the Diocese, whether they are Catholic or not. Catholic Charities services include food for the hungry, a free medical clinic, transformational housing for men and families, individual and family counseling, emergency financial aid, immigration and refugee services, job training and workforce development, prison ministry and former prisoner re-entry program.
HomeAid Northern Virginia brings together local non-profit service providers with the local homebuilder community to build/renovate homeless shelters, housing facilities and community spaces for programs serving the homeless. These collaborative partnerships enable homebuilders to do what they do best (build) and service providers to do what they do best (provide housing and wraparound services). HANV has completed 134 construction projects that together have served as a safe and stable space for more than 138,000 vulnerable individuals in our community.