Building on Our Legacy Breaks Ground

Friday, October 21st, 2016

Phoenix House Mid-Atlantic’s Kline building in Arlington, VA has been open since 2001 and currently houses our men’s residential programs, Phoenix Program and Nuevo Dia, and our adolescent male program, Boys Recovery Lodge. This month, staff, clients, donors, and community members gathered together to celebrate the groundbreaking of a new exercise facility and expansion of the Boys Recovery Lodge.

Rendering of new fitness facility

Rendering of new Fitness Facility

In 2012, the planning committee for the Phoenix House 50th Anniversary Celebration, in line with the vision to provide the highest quality of care, identified that an expansion to the current facility would not only bring value to the programs, but also provide direct access to the best form of medication: exercise. Currently, clients are transported to an outside facility for recreation time. The new building will also include an expansion for the Boys Recovery Lodge, allowing for larger meeting spaces, classrooms, common areas, and bedrooms.

At the groundbreaking ceremony, many spoke about their rewarding involvement with Phoenix House Mid-Atlantic, including Capital Campaign Chairs and Board Members Jim and Tracy Millar, Arlington County Board Chairman Libby Garvey, and Former U.S. Representative James “Jim” Moran. State Senator Barbara Favola was also in attendance. The building will honor Russell and Joan Hitt, major donors contributing $1.2 million to the campaign, as the Hitt Health and Fitness Center.

Major donors Russell and Joan Hitt

Major Donors Russell and Joan Hitt

“Four years ago, this fitness center was a pipe dream. Now, it’s a dream come true,” said Tracy Millar, who along with her husband, has worked tirelessly to ensure that this project came to fruition. Robin Norman Depaoli, Chair of the PHMA Board of Directors, spoke about the honor of being part of a project that is helping save lives. She noted that everyone has a connection to someone facing the difficulties of addiction, and Phoenix House continues to improve to provide the most effective treatment. “This building is going to contribute to wellness, which is so critical to the whole picture when talking about someone’s health,” she said. “The benefit of working with an organization like this is seeing the successes and knowing that lives are being saved.”

The ceremony concluded with a client from each of the residential programs sharing how this expansion will impact treatment. All in attendance were excited for the announcement that this four year long campaign is now ready to break ground, and the group looks forward to rejoining in July 2017 when the project is complete to celebrate at the dedication ceremony.


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