Submitted by: Aileen Callahan, Special Events Manager, Covenant House Pennsylvania (CHPA)

Covenant House Pennsylvania, located in the Germantown section of Philadelphia, serves homeless, runaway and at-risk youth of the Delaware Valley through the many programs at their 51-bed Crisis Center.

Covenant House was established over three decades ago in response to a growing crisis of homelessness among American youth – specifically urban – and has evolved into one of the most prominent and trusted childcare organizations in the world.  It now sponsors 21 affiliate locations throughout the United States and Latin America, including Covenant House Pennsylvania (CHPA), which opened its first program in Philadelphia in June 1999.     

The mission of Covenant House Pennsylvania is to serve youth in crisis with “absolute respect and unconditional love” and “to protect and safeguard all children.” CHPA serves any young person under the age of 21. The organization is the only program in Philadelphia and the largest program in the state of Pennsylvania to provide services to this population.

The majority of the kids who come to Covenant House have no other place to go. For many, their family life consisted of a series of placements or foster homes where they were never stable enough to get a proper foundation. For others, life at home was destroyed due to parental substance abuse or break-up, and they were simply asked to leave. The common factor in all these cases is the need to have a safe, stable living environment where they can get the necessary skills to one day be independent.

In order to help these kids become self-sufficient, Covenant House provides a continuum of services from Street Outreach to the Crisis Center that includes a shelter, health clinic, education and vocation programs, and finally, Rights of Passage, a transitional living program. By providing the youth with basic fundamental life skills, Covenant House knows that they will be prepared to make responsible and sustainable choices upon leaving our program and become productive members of the Philadelphia community.  

In keeping with the mindset of bettering the community, Covenant House Young Professionals (CHYP) is a diverse group of mostly 20-, 30-, and 40- somethings who care about the issue of youth homelessness and want to make a difference. The purpose of the board is to support the staff and youth of the organization by putting together fundraising and awareness events, spreading the word about Covenant House and the incredible young people it serves.

On Friday, October 1, Covenant House Young Professionals will hold their Third Annual Texas Hold’em Poker Tournament at the Urban Saloon in Fairmount. The event will feature a poker tournament along with blackjack, light appetizers and open bar from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. Prizes will be awarded to the players with the highest chip counts including a chance to win an Apple iPad. For more information, please contact Aileen Callahan at acallahan@covenanthouse.org, or to purchase tickets visit