PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — In West Philadelphia, a woman has adopted a community, especially her children, hoping to keep them safe. CBS3 introduces you to Rose’s Clubhouse in this week’s story of Brotherly Love.
On Friday afternoons, children flock to the Lucien E. Blackwell Community Center under the watchful eye of Rose Bryant.
“For some reason, I’m like a magnet to children,” Bryant said.
This is Rose’s Clubhouse at the hangout, a free program at the Blackwell Community Center, that keeps kids busy on Fridays from 5 pm to 8 pm
“She was always doing things like this as I was growing up,” said 16-year-old volunteer Destini Lewis. “No matter if it was like block parties, bookbag giveaways.”
At the clubhouse, there are opportunities for kids to paint, to grab a book from reading coaches, to play on the computer, or just to bounce around a ball. There’s plenty of food and snacks too. Volunteers help Bryant to keep it going.
“We may not be able to take away the things that happen to them that are very toxic that play on their mental health,” volunteer Rachel Honore said, “but what we can show them is, when they come here a decent meal, some love, a brain break.”
The mission is to give children a safe place, in an area where gun violence is too common.
“If people don’t feel no love,” Bryant said, “then they do dumb stuff.”
Bryant is always there to chat, although she says she doesn’t put up with bullies.
“You will get an hour-long sermon from me,” she said. “They don’t want that.”
Rose’s Clubhouse organizes outings like a late-summer trip to Dorney Park, free for the kids.
“Whenever somebody calls me, and they say they’ll provide a bus for the kids, we’re going,” Bryant said.
Bryant says it’s essential for all of the community to get involved.
“We have to take care of our children,” she said. “Whether they’re yours or not.”
Bryant says she wants to hear from people who can share some time with the children. You can reach her at 215-900-5871 or by email at [email protected]