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Historic Hull House Closing

January 24, 2012

Late last week, we read the news that the historic and pioneering Jane Addams Hull House will be filing for bankruptcy and closing its doors this spring. 

What a tragedy.

The Chicago-based social services organization founded by Nobel Peace Prize winner Jane Addams in 1889 helped thousands of immigrants adjust to life in America.  As the organization grew, it added services like child care, domestic violence counseling, job and literacy training, services for senior citizens, and housing assistance for 60,000 people annually in the Chicagoland area at nearly over 40 locations.
The scariest part of all this is that the reason for its existence is the reason for its closing: economics.  The increased demand for services could not be met by the decrease in funds available to support it.  Its very need is closing its doors.
Bridge’s Executive Director of Program, Joyce Hothan, shared her thoughts with our staff, saying, “This is indeed historic!  Hull House was also a symbol of the wonderful work [Jane Addams] inspired through the field of social work.”  Joyce went on to note “the dedication she had to gathering community resources and working with immigrants and the poor.  Sounds like what we do everyday and need to continue to do!” 
Joyce’s battle cry resounded with staff.  We all agree: we need to stay dedicated to our mission of connecting homeless families to a brighter future by gathering community resources and working with immigrants and the poor. 
Just like Jane Addams’ Hull House, Bridge Communities cannot accomplish its mission without the compassionate support of its donors and volunteers.  We pray that our community will continue to support the work we do to help homeless families in DuPage County cross the bridge to self-sufficiency, financial stability and permanent housing.
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