By Megan Guzman, Community Life Leader
At our Open House in October, our community celebrated 34 years of being rooted in the Adams Morgan neighborhood. Amidst the festivity, we also gathered to honor a new chapter in Euclid Home – the blessing of our accessible apartment in partnership with Jubilee Housing!
This chapter began some time ago when our core members began to experience challenges moving around their home on Euclid Street, lovingly called “The Red Door” by housemates. Our L’Arche charter calls us to respond to the changing needs of our members and, for Euclid, this meant finding a fully accessible home to meet our core members’ aging and mobility needs. We realized we needed a more immediate solution last winter and expedited our search for accessible housing in our current neighborhood.
We were met with countless obstacles and quickly adjusted to prioritize finding an accessible home where Calvin, Andrew, and Mo could safely live while the assistants continued living in “The Red Door.” Still, a three bedroom accessible apartment close to our current neighborhood seemed impossible to find.
Our search led us right around the corner to Jubilee Housing. For over 40 years, Jubilee has provided high quality affordable housing and other services to the Adams Morgan and Columbia Heights neighborhoods. Upon hearing of L’Arche’s need, Dorothy Larimer, VP of Property Management & Development for Jubilee Housing, recalled thinking that “the stars must be in perfect alignment because a three bedroom accessible unit had just come available at our Ontario Court project.” In a matter of months, Euclid housemates signed their lease and prepared for the transition. Jubilee further supported our community by renovating a bathroom with a walk-in shower. After a lengthy move with much help from friends and community members, Calvin shared his excitement about his new space, saying “Now, I’m home!”
Now, all members of Euclid Home continue to explore how to share life together as a family living in two different homes. It is a new way of living for L’Arche GWDC – and not without its challenges in these first months – but an opportunity to broaden our community’s presence and grow in our understanding of sharing life together has emerged. We are grateful for our partnership with Jubilee Housing and Euclid housemates look forward to sharing in many more gatherings with their Ontario Court neighbors.
At our House Blessing, we paused to give thanks for Euclid Home and the supportive community that made this new apartment possible. For all that has changed, countless more remains the same. The dinner table is smaller, yet the welcome is as warm as ever. The sounds of Home Alone and “I Love Lucy” reruns still greet visitors at the door. The familiar refrain of “Walk in the Light” continues to close many an evening prayer. Our homes are sustained by such traditions and a commitment to walk with one another through all the changes life presents. As we encounter challenges and uncertainty, we need only look to one another, for as long as we are bound together, we are home.