New Orleans Women & Children’s Shelter Introduces ‘Jonathan’s Play Yard’

NEW ORLEANS – The kids at the New Orleans Women & Children’s Shelter now have a safe and secure place to play. Founders of the Shelter, Dan and Jackie Silverman, worked in collaboration with Palmisano and St. Charles Avenue Presbyterian Church to create Jonathan’s Play Yard, a sports court for basketball, hopscotch and four square, with a separate riding path for tricycles.

         “We wanted to create a safe and secure place for our kids to play so that they really feel at home while we are working with their families to transition them from homelessness to independence,” said Dan Silverman. “A large majority of the children at the shelter are under the age of ten. Recognizing the needs of every child, we worked with Palmisano to create this dream play yard. We are thrilled with the outcome and the children are having a blast!”

         Funded in part by St. Charles Avenue Presbyterian Church, Palmisano and Dan and Jackie Silverman, the play yard was created in loving memory of Dan and Jackie’s late son, Jonathan Silverman. The team at Palmisano started the plans for Jonathan’s Play Yard in April 2016, and completed the project in November 2016.

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         “Palmisano looks to make a meaningful impact with every project that we build,” Wesley Palmisano, CEO of Palmisano, said. “That's especially true in this case. We are proud to have made an investment not only in the New Orleans Women & Children's Shelter, but also in the lives of children in our community.”

         According to Rev. Sarah Chancellor-Watson at St. Charles Avenue Presbyterian Church, “St. Charles Avenue Presbyterian Church is so pleased to have the opportunity to partner with the New Orleans Women and Children’s Shelter as we answer our mutual calling to serve the most vulnerable in our city. We pray that this playground will be a blessing and a place of healing and hope for not only the families at the shelter but for the entire community.”

         The New Orleans Women & Children’s Shelter is the largest shelter for homeless women and children in New Orleans, with a mission to transition homeless families to sustainable and independent living. Since its inception in 2007, the Shelter has helped more than 1,200 homeless women and children transition from living on the street to safe, affordable housing. An average of 88 percent of the families served by the New Orleans Women & Children’s Shelter transition to independence and stability. The Shelter continues to stay filled to capacity and at any given time, two-thirds of the residents are children. Recognizing the needs of every child, the Shelter has implemented a comprehensive children’s case management program and after-school education and enrichment program.

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