Ali Forney Center Breaks Ground On Residence Named For Bea Arthur
On Monday, July 20, 2015, there will be a groundbreaking ceremony for the Bea Arthur Residence, an 18-bed residence for homeless LGBT youth operated by the Ali Forney Center. In 2012 the New York City Council and the Manhattan Borough President awarded $3,300,000 for the renovation of a long vacant building owned by the New York City Department of Housing and Preservation Development. The building has now been turned over to the Ali Forney Center in partnership with Cooper Square Committee, and renovations are beginning this month. It is anticipated that the building will begin to provide housing by the end of 2016.The groundbreaking will be attended by state and city political leaders and by the staff and clients of the Ali Forney Center.
Bea Arthur gave one of her final public performances as a benefit for the Ali Forney Center in 2005. She was very upset to learn that hundreds of thousands of LGBT teens were rejected by their families, and driven to homelessness. She said that she would do anything in her power to help these teens. When she died in 2009 the Ali Forney Center learned that she had bequeathed $300,000 to us in her will. At that time, Carl Siciliano, the Executive Director of the Ali Forney Center, pledged that the first building they owned would be named in her memory.