A project three years in the works, Community Renewal's second Friendship House is now making its way through the platting process to become a reality.

A project three years in the works, Community Renewal's second Friendship House is now making its way through the platting process to become a reality.

Shawnee Planning Commissioners unanimously approved a preliminary plat request that will now be heard by Shawnee City Commissioners July 15.

The three-acre site — established to become a Friendship House two years ago through a partnership with The Absentee Shawnee Housing Authority — occupies the southeast corner of Main Street and Bryan Avenue in the Rolling Hills South Addition on Absentee land — just up the street from Pleasant Grove Elementary School.

In May 2018 Community Renewal Director Brandon Dyer named Michael Phillips the coordinator — and live-in resident — for the house at Main and Bryan. He and his wife, Jessica, and their three sons are set to move into the unique neighborhood resource once it’s built.

One goal of the Friendship House’s community room is to provide after-school activities and a safe place for children in the Horace Mann and Pleasant Grove neighborhoods, GED (Hi-SET) programs, adult literacy classes, and other services that meet the needs of the neighborhood.

Friendship House

Community Renewal's inaugural project, the Craig Family Friendship House, at 812 W. 7th Street in Kickapoo Park, has been in operation for nearly a year now.

Travis Flood, Community Renewal's Friendship House director, and his family call the site on the northwest corner of 7th and Pottenger their home.

Though it looks like a typical house from the outside, some alterations make it a distinctively different structure.

The family lives upstairs in the home, making room for a community space constructed on the first floor both accessible and available for neighborhood meetings and after school programs.

Moving a trained staff member into a neighborhood is a good example of how a Friendship House — and future ones — intend to serve the community. The project immerses Flood and his family fully into an area, making them a close and consistent resource for their neighbors.

Community Renewal

The program has consistently shown that its mission is an easy sell — still gaining momentum since it hit the ground running just three years ago, the group passionately promotes the restoration of relationships from within neighborhoods, bringing member after member into its fold.

After the membership drive for We Care. team members and Block Leaders were established, the organization’s set its sights on its next phase — planting team members into neighborhoods so by becoming fully invested in the area they can be a constant and easily accessible resource to their neighbors.

Community Renewal Pottawatomie County’s office is at 1000 N. Kickapoo.

To learn more, join in or make a donation, visit Community Renewal Shawnee, OK on Facebook, visit http://communityrenewal.org or call (405) 273-1035.