Foster Care Nonprofit Building Outreach Hub
Place of Hope, a faith-based foster care organization that serves six counties, is building a $4.6 million hub on Northlake Boulevard just east of its main offices next to Christ Fellowship.
The nonprofit will use about half of the 18,000-square-feet in two buildings for its offices, recruitment and training activities for foster families, CEO Charles Bender said. The rest of the space will be leased out as commercial offices to tenants such as attorneys or insurance companies to generate money to support Place of Hope’s programs, he said.
The arrangement is similar to the one Place of Hope has on Northlake Boulevard east of I-95, where it leases space to an auto body shop and runs a Treasures for Hope secondhand store.
Place of Hope will also use some of the new Lane Outreach Center as “social enterprise space” that can be rented out by its supporters at market rate to generate money to help kids and offset operating costs.
“In the for-profit, that would go into a company owner’s pocket. In the non-profit world, that goes directly into saving lives,” Bender said.
The Palm Beach Gardens headquarters will position the nonprofit to grow its programs and core staff to oversee them, Bender said. No additional campuses are planned, but some campuses have room for expansion, he said.
Place of Hope is the largest provider of traditional foster care in the six-county region from Broward to Indian River, according to its website. It has about 148 beds with licensed foster families scattered throughout Palm Beach County to place children who are removed from their homes, in addition to 36 beds in six cottages with live-in parents at its Palm Beach Gardens campus, Bender said.
Residents of the Square Lake subdivision to the south had concerns about the design of the building, spillover lighting and hours of operation, according to county planning documents. Place of Hope agreed to a “significant” landscape buffer along the south, east and west property lines and a privacy wall to the south, according to a planning staff report.
Two homes that back out onto Northlake Boulevard, separate from the Square Lake neighborhood, will be demolished to make way for the offices, Bender said. They were up for sale, and Place of Hope put in an offer to their common owner, contingent upon getting approval for new zoning from Palm Beach County earlier this year, he said.
The outreach center named for donors Tom and Kathleen Lane should be open for business by the end of 2018, Bender said. Place of Hope is seeking approval for a similar building in Hobe Sound, he said.