NOLA for Life grantee fails to live up to promise of building publicly-financed community center 

A nonprofit organization called The Family Center of Hope has received more than $2 million in federal grants to build a community center at Washington and Broad streets. More than five years later, the building remains vacant, and work is at a standstill. Now the organization has been given $40,000 to provide counseling services as part of the city's NOLA for Life anti-violence program. (Steve Myers / The Lens) Show caption
A nonprofit organization called The Family Center of Hope has received more than $2 million in federal grants to build a community center at Washington and Broad streets. More than five years later, the building remains vacant, and work is at a standstill. Now the organization has been given $40,000 to provide counseling services as part of the city's NOLA for Life anti-violence program. (Steve Myers / The Lens)

Group gets grant amid broken word

The nonprofit group The Family Center of Hope has failed to deliver on its promise of building a community center at Washington and Broad streets — a project backed by $2.7 million in federal funds routed through the city and state. But that hasn’t stopped the city from awarding the politically connected nonprofit another $40,000 from the city’s NOLA for Life anti-violence effort.

The Family Center of Hope started working on the community center in 2007. It’s still not finished. Due to legal disputes, no work has been completed in more than a year. The contractor claims the nonprofit owes him more than $900,000.

This has caused the city and state to hold off on issuing checks for $250,000 for the community center, according to a lawsuit the Family Center filed against the project’s architect.

But in March, the city and the Greater New Orleans Foundation decided to entrust The Family Center of Hope with another grant: $40,000 from the NOLA for Life Fund.

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This story was originally published by The Lens (thelensnola.org), an independent, nonprofit newsroom serving New Orleans.

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NOLA for Life grantee fails to live up to promise of building publicly-financed community center