In 1936 on the day after Christmas, neighbors descended on 4410 Main Street to open the first location of what was then the North Light Boys’ Club, now North Light Community Center. According to contemporary historians, the boys “set to work with a will and fine spirit of cooperation to clean out their quarters and help organize a program…for a lasting benefit to all present boy members and that legion of boys that will throng its doors in the future.” Although North Light, and the surrounding neighborhoods, has certainly changed in these past 80 years, our mission of neighbor helping neighbor remains the same.
Today, North Light serves 3,000 people each year through programs for children, teens, and families. In the past year alone, over 100 hundred children received affordable, quality care through after-school and summer programs; teens received caring, supportive guidance on their college and career paths, ensuring a successful future; over 100,000 pounds of food was distributed to families in need; and over 250 families received holiday assistance and nearly 700 seniors received holiday meals through Manayunk Meals and More. North Light raises 90% of its budget through charitable giving each year to keep these critical services in our community.
To ensure a new generation experiences the community spirit embodied in North Light, we are engaging 80 new supporters by our 80th birthday. If you haven’t given to North Light before or it’s been awhile, consider giving during our #NL80for80 campaign from now until December 26. If you have given to North Light, thank you (!) and consider sharing the joy of giving back to our community with your family and friends. That “fine spirit of cooperation” is alive and well in our community all these years later.