Son of a Saint Kicks Off New Headquarters Construction with Groundbreaking Ceremony
July 12, 2021
Foundational supporters, partners, and elected officials gathered at the future site of The Ochsner Health Son of a Saint Bivian Lee Jr. Center to mark the official start of building renovations.
NEW ORLEANS (July 12, 2021) — Son of a Saint, the 501c3 nonprofit dedicated to inspiring mentorship and transforming the lives of New Orleans’ fatherless boys, hosted a construction groundbreaking event for its new headquarters. The ceremony for The Ochsner Health Son of a Saint Bivian Lee, Jr. Center happened on Saturday, July 10, at 2803 St. Philip St. in the heart of Mid-City, New Orleans. The occasion marked yet another milestone for Son of a Saint, as the organization celebrates its landmark 10-year anniversary throughout 2021.
Top partners who participated in the event included Ochsner Health, Hancock Whitney, Trapolin-Peer Architects (TPA) and Broadmoor Construction, as well as Son of a Saint board members, network constituents, and elected officials. All those present at the event have been instrumental in bringing Son of a Saint’s headquarters vision to fruition. City officials and local government representatives who attended the ceremony included The Office of Mayor LaToya Cantrell, The Office of District Attorney Jason Williams, as well as Sheriff Marlon Gusman and New Orleans City Council Members Helena Moreno and Joseph Giarusso.
“This building will absolutely fulfill our mission and our goal to become ‘A Home For Our Boys’ in virtually every way,” said Son of a Saint Founder & CEO Bivian “Sonny” Lee III. “We welcome this newly envisioned space that will serve its purpose as a true center for Son of a Saint mentees to learn, create, bond, develop life skills, have fun, and much more, in one comfortable and familiar location,” he added. “We sincerely thank Ochsner Health, Hancock Whitney, Trapolin-Peer, and Broadmoor for not only believing in our bold future, but also supporting it. Our team of board members and staff cannot wait to welcome the rest of our Son of a Saint family through these doors in early 2022.”
With an emphasis on the interior atmosphere, Trapolin-Peer’s design approach aims to create a space that is welcoming and playful for the young mentees, while still relaying the professionalism and importance of the organization’s mission: enhancing the lives of fatherless boys, by equipping them with the tools they need to become productive men. The design pays homage to the historic character of the century-old icehouse structure, while bringing warmth and addressing challenges related to Son of a Saint’s evolving programming and holistic activities within the space.
“TPA is proud to support and partner with Son of a Saint to create this new home for their growing community,” said Paula Peer, AIA, Principal of Trapolin-Peer Architects. “TPA’s depth of adaptive re-use experience aligns perfectly with the challenges of transforming this existing co-working space into a fun, collaborative center for these young boys. We did not hesitate to partner with Sonny and his team.”
For Son of a Saint, the utilization of the building cannot be overstated. In addition to becoming a center and safe haven for the young men in the program, the headquarters will also allow the organization to bring previously outsourced programming in-house. Services provided by Son of a Saint will include technology labs, private individual and group therapy sessions, tutoring services, ACT and college prep, creative arts, nutrition education, cooking classes, enrichment activities and much more.
Since its inception in 2011, Son of a Saint has increased its mentee participants from 10 boys to now include 170 young men across Greater New Orleans. That constitutes a more-than-tenfold increase in its first decade. As Son of a Saint continues the crucial work of mentoring and enhancing the lives of fatherless young men in the New Orleans area, the organization is poised to add more programming, more mentors and more boys to its cause, reaching 200 mentee participants by the end of 2021. Son of a Saint holistically supports young men between the ages of 10 and 18, providing them with mentorship, education, mental health services and travel experiences, as well as internship and service-learning opportunities.
For more information about the organization, including programming, enrichment activities, leadership profiles and opportunities to get involved, visit www.sonofasaint.org or call (504) 655-8416. Son of a Saint also welcomes contributions or other donations, which can be mailed to 2803 Saint Philip St. New Orleans, LA 70119. Follow Son of a Saint on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter via @sonofasaintorg for live updates about the organization and its participants.
About Son of a Saint
Son of a Saint launched in 2011 to address the burgeoning problem of fatherless boys in the New Orleans area. Under the direction of Bivian “Sonny” Lee III, the 501(c)(3) organization is dedicated to its mission of transforming the lives of young males through mentorship, emotional support, development of life skills, exposure to constructive experiences and formation of positive, lasting peer-to-peer relationships. For more information or to get involved, visit www.sonofasaint.org.
Elliot Hutchinson, Son of a Saint, firstname.lastname@example.org, 225-281-0917