Claretian Associates and POAH co-owns the property, with Claretian Associates reopening the center as the SALUD Center, co-locating its main offices and some other direct services for residents and the community.
Claretian Associates has worked tirelessly to bring the SALUD Center to South Chicago, said its Executive Director, Angela Hurlock. “When we were first approached of the Y's closing, many residents and community stakeholders encouraged us to do our best to keep the facility intact and in operation. That’s when we began to think strategically about the right type of partnerships that would benefit South Chicago and our most value assets – our residents."
Claretian Associates is a community anchor and the only nonprofit housing developer based in South Chicago, where it has developed over 140 units of affordable housing to stabilize low-income families and seniors. With deep ties to grassroots coalitions such as the Concerned Citizens to Keep the South Chicago YMCA and support from 10th Ward Alderwoman Susan Sadlowski-Garza, Claretian Associates was able to leverage its relationships and local housing expertise to assist POAH in not only preserving these units, but also fortifying the health of its residents through the incorporation of wellness services that address the physical and social determinants of health.
POAH, a nonprofit organization that manages, creates and restores affordable housing, purchased this facility with the commitment to continue to provide affordable housing for years to come. POAH plans in the coming years to secure financing to complete capital improvements that will extend the life of the SALUD Center and enhance residents’ comfort and experience.
YMCA President and CEO Richard Malone stressed that as part of the Y’s ongoing focus on youth development, the YMCA is maintaining an active presence in South Chicago. “The YMCA of Metro Chicago will continue to provide Youth Safety and Violence Prevention (YSVP) programming from its current South Chicago location and will consider other youth and family programs in the communities either by itself or by partnering with other organizations,” said Malone, who noted that the YMCA offers many of its programs through partner sites.
“We are excited to further strengthen our community’s voice through this unique partnership with POAH and the YMCA of Metro Chicago. The YMCA and YSVP are vital assets to our community’s identity and redevelopment plan for South Chicago," said Hurlock.