BOCA RATON — After more than a year of renovations, the first of several refurbished cottages opened at the new Place of Hope at the Haven Campus in western Boca Raton.

A formal dedication ceremony was held July 29 for the Genesis Boys’ Cottage, a home for full-time foster parents and up to eight boys, who are part of Florida’s foster care system.

Designed in the model of the Place of Hope campus in North Palm Beach, the Genesis Boys’ Cottage is styled like a modern, family home with decorated rooms; a large, communal kitchen and dining room; a family room; and an office for parents and staff. Each room reflects the support of the Place of Hope donors, who have contributed funds, labor, flooring, furniture, kitchen and bathroom accessories, lighting fixtures,
bedding and décor.

The dedication ceremony recognized the collective donation of time, energy and funding that made the Cottage and the renovations of the entire campus possible.

“When we arrived in south county, we knew good people would greet us with their dedication,” said Executive Director Charles Bender. “But we had no idea how many, and we are overwhelmed by the outpouring. From the lead foundations – R. Cathleen Cox McFarlane Charitable Foundation, The Helping Hands Foundation and JPMorgan Chase Foundation – that invested in our mission to the love and generosity shown by the Angel Moms to the wonderful partners and friends, we are sincerely appreciative of our newly expanded Place of Hope family.”

More renovations are underway. The Alumni Impact Girls’ Cottage is under renovation to welcome young women who have aged out of foster care. Plans also include renovating the balance of the campus housing, adding an arts/education/wellness center with a fitness element, outdoor sports facilities and a resource center. To support these renovations, special events and fundraisers are being planned, such as the new First Responder Team Challenge on Sept. 27 and the Second Annual Hope Bash Boca on Nov. 8, chaired by Marie Ochigrossi and co-chaired by Denise Day and Jennifer Lentoski.

The Haven Campus has served more than 1,000 foster children over 36 years and its board of directors in 2013 selected Place of Hope to carry on its mission. Place of Hope is a faith-based, state-licensed child welfare organization with locations in Palm Beach Gardens, West Palm Beach and Boca Raton. It provides family-style foster care (emergency and long-term); family outreach and intervention; maternity care; safety for domestic minor sexually trafficked victims; transitional housing and support services; adoption and foster care recruitment and support; hope and healing opportunities for children and families who have been traumatized by abuse and neglect.