In addition to providing services to at-risk youth and families in the community, The Chase Home is an actual home for dozens, a reality that sometimes entails major capital projects.
Comprising more than 30,000 square feet and built in 1902, The Chase Home building is in “dire need” of new windows in the majority of its 18 bedrooms, according to Executive Director Meme Wheeler.
“We were aware that the windows were in rough shape, but several recent inspections have made it clear we cannot make it through the winter with many of our current bedroom windows,” she explained. “Some bedrooms are unusable as a result.”
Noting some have rotten sills, Director of Operations Craig Dennis said others are literally falling out.
“It’s not safe, and we are in a bit of a bind,” he said. “Winter came earlier than we might have liked, but we are going to do our best to at least replace the worst of the windows.”
In total, 54 windows require replacement with total costs estimated at $42,000. In 2019, other capital projects, including a new roof, are slated to begin.
“We are exploring all possibilities to help finance the windows and other required projects,” explained Wheeler, who said she believes a recently launched online campaign could prove successful.
“We have been amazed at the increase in support from the community and believe this latest project can help us strengthen and expand our network of friends and supporters,” she added. “We are truly indebted to the Portsmouth community and friends and businesses from across the region.”
The result of this increase in support, noted Dennis, is an increase in numbers served.
“We have probably increased the numbers we serve on an annual basis by 33% percent in just the past few years,” he said. “The needs in Portsmouth and across the state are there, and Chase Home must continue to aggressively expand to meet these needs.”
Founded in 1877, Chase Home in Portsmouth is one of the oldest nonprofits in New Hampshire, serving more than 140 at-risk youth annually statewide through prevention, early intervention, residential and community-based programs. Some youth are served in the community while others live at Chase Home.