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Nonprofit Institute
College of Southern Maryland
PO Box 910
La Plata, MD 20646-0910
Fax: 301-934-7704

Charles County
Cara Fogarty

Michelle Sullivan

St. Mary's County
Harriet Yaffe

St. Mary's County Nonprofit Spotlight:

The Garvey Senior Activity Center Council, Inc.

Garvey Center staffThe Garvey Senior Activity Center Council, Inc., (Garvey Council) evolved from a grassroots movement called the Garvey Group in July 2014.  The current Garvey Senior Activity Center (Garvey Center), Leonardtown, Maryland, was built in 1954.  As seniors have become more active (age 50 plus,) the current Garvey Center has reached its maximum capacity to accommodate the growing number of seniors interested in active, healthy lives.   As a result, the Garvey Group petitioned the Commissioners of St. Mary’s County (CSMC) with an outpouring of community support, to move the planning for a new Garvey Center, up two years in their budget planning.  The Garvey Group movement also reached-out and partnered with the Leonardtown Library (which was also built in 1954) to ensure both would have a chance of obtaining the Commissioners’ support for new buildings. The Garvey Group achieved this goal in May, 2015.  The Commissioners approved moving the planning for a new Center up two years, and also approved for a new Leonardtown Library to be built and co-located with the Garvey Center.

In December 2015, the Garvey Group became incorporated as the Garvey Senior Activity Center Council, Inc., which was then approved by the IRS to become a non-profit organization, 501(c) 3.  The Council is comprised of twelve voting members (five are Executive Board Members) and a continuous growth of Associate members.  All are Garvey Center participants as well.

Over the past three years (2014 – 2017), our Council has been intimately involved with the planning and design of the new center with the Department of Aging, Commission on Aging and the design architect, Grimm & Parker (the Design Architect).  The Council is comprised of active seniors of St. Mary’s County (50 Plus) who volunteer their time, ideas and skills to support:

  • Current programs and activities for the seniors at the Garvey Center
  • We are an extension of the Garvey Center staff when needed, i.e. Reception desk, kitchen support, teaching a class, supporting book sales, master gardeners’ work on landscaping and upkeep, decorating for special events, holidays, etc.
  • Fundraising activities to augment funding for current programs and activities, as well as, future events
  • Fundraising activities to provide funds to augment and enhance the new Garvey Center programs and activities, and many other non-funded items.
  • We are involved with other non-profit organizations and partner with them when our interests and advantageous
  • Attend non-profit training classes, i.e., sponsored by the Non-Profit Institute of the College of Southern Maryland, County Libraries, Webinars, etc.
  • We stay involved with participants of the Garvey Center by interacting with the seniors by sponsoring bingo prizes, ice-cream socials, “Breakfast with the Council” etc.
  • Attend public forums and other events to ensure our Council’s purpose and achievements are known by the community (Health Fair, Vendor Fairs, Commissioners Forums, State Delegates Town Halls, News Articles)
  • Created media web pages for fundraising and community awareness (Southern Maryland Gives and Garvey Council Facebook page)

On June 19, 2017, the Leonardtown Planning and Zoning Commission approved the Architect Site plan for the new Garvey Center and Leonardtown Library. This was a significant milestone.  Now, the dream of a new Center is finally becoming a reality. 

The Council will maintain our support for on-going activities and programs at the existing Garvey Center, as well as to continue to educate and keep the St. Mary’s County Community informed on who we are, what we are doing, along with progress updates.   Also, the funds we have raised (along with future fund raisers), is an enduring effort and will be used to supplement items which are not in the Garvey Center budget (now and in the future).  This will ensure that a quality experience exists for the seniors who are active at the Garvey Center today and in the future.  Our Council is a very dedicated, creative and energetic group of seniors helping other seniors stay healthy in mind, body and spirit!

Charles County Nonprofit Spotlight:

Jude House

“Because someone you know needs us."

Our Philosophy: Chemical dependencies are treatable, highly complex illnesses. Treatment is most often successful when chemically dependent persons come together in an atmosphere of abstinence and mutual support.

In 1972, a recovering alcoholic temporarily housed a friend in a cabin off of U.S. Route 301, about 10 miles south of La Plata.  The friend had an alcoholic drinking pattern and was attempting to quit.  Others in the recovering community volunteered their support and over time other suffering alcoholics used the small building as a "Home on the Road to Recovery."

In 1974, a farmhouse in the Dentsville area was offered, and the Jude House activities moved there.  Volunteers continued to see to the needs of men attempting to stop drinking.

Supporters of the Jude House successfully petitioned the Charles County Government for use of the old Bel Alton School building for their on-going work.  The Jude House opened there in October of 1979.

The Jude House has grown from a strictly volunteer effort to help one man, into an organized program of recovery operated by both professional staff and volunteers. Over the years, the Jude House has responded to the needs of the addicted by offering whatever treatment services appeared to be most necessary.

In 1989, a grant made major renovations possible at the Bel Alton location.  In 1992, the Bel Alton building was reopened and the Jude House began its present program -- a nonprofit, long-term, live-in/work-out format.

In November 2012, the Jude House began outpatient treatment in order to be able to provide a more extensive treatment plan for recovery, including group and individual meeting environments.