Saturday, April 19, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

My old Rec Room never looked this good

Teens get a new game room at the Salvation Army.

My old Rec Room never looked this good

Congrats to the good people at The Salvation Army Red Shield Family Residence on North Broad Street, where a nifty new"'teen room" was unveiled yesterday. The renovation of the room from a dark, dull, institutional-looking hole in the wall to a sparkly fun center was the result of a “Pay it Forward” hands-on project by Leadship Philadelphia's Class of 2011, which will graduate tomorrow.

"We celebrated the unveiling of the new space with the volunteers, shelter residents and staff, project leaders and community representatives," spokeswoman Jamie Bartolino wrote in an e-mail yesterday that including stunning before-and-after phoots of the room. "With over $24,000 raised to fund the project, the room is a spectacular addition to the shelter, and one that will keep teens in a safe environment while granting them independence and sparking creativity."

She wrote that teens at the shelter  are already making fast use of the room's new computers, electric guitar and Wii game system. 

She added: " At the event, we met Dominique H. an 18-year-old boy who spent two months at the shelter with his mother and four siblings. They were forced to leave their home after his mom was injured on the job and could no longer work and pay rent.

"Dominique says that The Salvation Army has helped their family save up and prepare to move into a new home, and that the staff at the Red Shield Family Residence are kind and treat the residents with respect. He is very happy with the new Teen Room. Dominique's mom says she is very grateful that the shelter accepted her whole family so that they could stay together during their difficult time. This story is just one of the dozens of inspiring tales that the Salvation Army’s Red Shield Family Residence makes possible."

Bless their hearts.

To read more, click here. 

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Ronnie Polaneczky Daily News Columnist
About this blog

When my phone rings here at the Daily News, nine times out of ten the caller begins the conversation with, “Yeah, so what happened was…”.

Because this is Philly, the caller doesn’t say, “My name is Bob” – or Mary – “and I wonder if I could have a moment of your time?” Philadelphians are too direct for that. They just say, “Yeah, so what happened was…”, and then tumble into a tale they think oughta be shared with a wider audience. I love getting these calls (even the ones where it becomes clear, after 30 seconds, where the caller sowed the seeds of his own misery), because they give me chance to connect with fellow citizens in a way that no other job allows. Well, okay, no other job for which I’m remotely qualified.

That’s why my blog is titled “So What Happened Was…”. To me, it’s the quintessentially Philly way of saying, “Once upon a time.” When I hear it, I know a good story is coming. And I can’t wait to see how it turns out.

Ronnie Polaneczky has been an award-winning columnist for The Philadelphia Daily News since 1999, offering a front-steps perspective on every aspect of city life, from the sublime to the stupid. In her past life, she was the editor-in-chief of Atlantic City Magazine, associate editor at Philadelphia Magazine and a fulltime freelancer published in Ladies Home Journal, Good Housekeeping, Redbook, Reader's Digest, Men's Health, MarieClaire and others. She lives with her husband, daughter and various pets in the city's Fairmount section, where she dreams of one day singing The National Anthem at an Eagles game. In addition to her column and blog, you can enjoy Ronnie's musings in podcast form here.


Read more from Ronnie Polaneczky at Earth to Philly, the Daily News blog on anything and everything "Green Reach Ronnie at polaner@phillynews.com.

Ronnie Polaneczky Daily News Columnist
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