New Philadelphia program launches in battle against opioids, homelessness

The leader of Project HOME says it’s launching what could be a "game changer" in the battle against opioids and homelessness. Sister Mary Scullion is the tireless and renowned co-founder of Project HOME, started three decades ago to combat homelessness.

Through the years, Project HOME has built 1,000 units of what’s called "supportive housing" for those not just homeless, but often struggling with addiction. Scullion says Project HOME is taking the next step. "This collaborative provides linkages between street outreach, the hospitals, treatment and a place to live."

Sitting under a white tent, in the middle of Fairmount Avenue Wednesday, are Ira Lubert and Pam Estadt. With a $25 million donation from the couple, Project HOME will start the Estadt-Lubert Collaborative for Housing and Recovery.


Working with Temple, Penn and Jefferson health systems, Project HOME plans to build 125 new housing units in three years for those who are treated for addiction in the hospitals but have no place to go afterwards.

Scullion says, "All three hospital systems see the same thing we did, that it doesn’t make sense to just discharge a person to the streets."

Scullion says it will take three years for Project Home to ramp up the effort, but they’re excited and focused on the work ahead.