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New opioid treatment center is a welcome addition to West Baltimore | READER COMMENTARY

Dr. Gary D. Rodwell, executive director of the Coppin Heights Community Development Corporation, stands in front of the Center for Health Care and Healthy Living at the Hebrew Orphan Asylum. He and his organization saved the building and renovated it.
Dr. Gary D. Rodwell, executive director of the Coppin Heights Community Development Corporation, stands in front of the Center for Health Care and Healthy Living at the Hebrew Orphan Asylum. He and his organization saved the building and renovated it. (Barbara Haddock Taylor / Baltimore Sun)

The new Center for Health Care and Healthy Living at the former Hebrew Orphan Asylum is great news for Baltimore (“In West Baltimore, a 19th century Hebrew orphanage is transformed into an opioid treatment center,” Feb. 29). The re-purposed building has a long history of supporting Baltimoreans, first as an orphanage, then as a community hospital and now as a center of recovery, health and hope.

Almost 100 years ago, the Central Scholarship Bureau was created when the Hebrew Orphans Asylum closed, and Baltimore’s Jewish philanthropic leaders leveraged the remaining funds to provide vocational scholarships for orphaned Jewish boys. Then, as now, the purpose of the towering Rayner Avenue building was to address the urgent needs of disadvantaged Baltimore residents.

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Today, Central Scholarship remains committed to Baltimore residents, providing more than $1 million annually for career training and college scholarships. More than half of our awards go to Baltimore residents who are striving to achieve educational success that enables better lives and stable communities. Just like the Center for Health Care and Healthy Living, we are invested in Baltimore and its strong citizens.

Congratulations to the Coppin Heights Community Development Corporation and Baltimore Heritage for their determination in making this dream a reality.

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Jan Wagner, Owings Mills

The writer is president of Central Scholarship.

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