Six Great Quotes from John Chapman about Community Lodgings
City Councilman John Chapman first heard of Community Lodgings when he was a child growing up in public housing in Alexandria. He was re-introduced to them when he was employed as a paraprofessional instructor, or a teacher’s aide, at Alexandria City Public School’s (ACPS) George Washington Middle School in 2003. He had heard that some of the middle school students were getting after school help with their homework.
You said that in 2003, few of the ACPS partner organizations had robust after school programs like Community Lodgings.
“Yes. I thought it was really cool that they were one of those community partners filling that gap.”
As a city councilman, how have you seen Community Lodgings support Alexandria?
“Organizations like Community Lodgings support our at-risk populations by helping them to transform into self-sustaining families. These communities, with the support of Community Lodgings, can be more resilient and more networked into the community to receive support.”
“The type and quality of programming that Community Lodgings traditionally offers serves as a buffer for at-risk students and families, especially when they are combatting drug use and homelessness.”
Why is Community Lodgings’ work important?
“Our families are more vulnerable now than ever. And especially the kids. I think it is because of market forces around housing and the growth of at-risk activities for students. To have Community Lodgings be effective helps our city serve as a safe place for these families to thrive.”
Why do you think they have been successful for 30 years?
“They have good management. The executive directors have been stellar. They know individuals and families but they understood the community and its resources, and they leverage those resources for the benefit of the participants.”
How has Community Lodgings made Alexandria extraordinary?
“By filling some of the gaps where city support is needed, such as programs for disadvantaged youth, supportive housing, community engagement, and after school programming.”