Local community leaders celebrate groundbreaking of expanded Vera Court Neighborhood Center

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By Rebecca Ressl
Vera Court Neighborhood Center

On April 24 local officials joined development partners, community donors and Vera Court families to celebrate the launch of Vera Vision 2020. Mayor Paul Soglin kicked off the ceremony by talking about the impact Vera Vision 2020 will have on the community. “The Vera Court Neighborhood Center is a vital part of the community. It has served hundreds of families for over 20 years and continues to enhance the health, education and employment of the residents. This expansion will mean a better future for all of the families,” he said.

Vera Vision 2020 will double the size of the center by adding a middle and high school wing. The new space will give the center the capacity to provide the academic programming and services necessary to help area students succeed in school. This includes one-on-one literacy tutoring, educational technology, nutritious meals and family case management. The campaign will also renovate the outdated kitchen and computer lab.

“It is our vision that all of our students are reading at grade level and graduating high school. The racial achievement gap is a critical issue in our community but our children are committed to achieving their educational goals. We believe that with the support of our community we can make this a reality,” said Executive Director Thomas Solyst.

Thanks to the many lead gifts from community supporters, Vera Vision 2020 is more than halfway toward achieving its $2.2 million campaign goal. The building expansion has begun but we will continue to raise the remaining funds necessary to unfold the new intensive academic programming over the next four years.

The nonprofit Vera Court Neighborhood Center has been serving Northside residents since 1994. Services include early childhood programming, afterschool and summer camp for elementary and middle school students, high school programming, nutritious meals and access to translation and social services. For more information visit veracourt.org.