| Management changes at A Friendly Place
After 25 years of ministry to homeless women in downtown Oakland, A Friendly Place quietly changed management July 1 and is now under the umbrella of St. Mary's Center, an Oakland nonprofit that serves isolated and homeless seniors.
Sister Marti McCarthy, a Social Service Sister, became the new director on that date. Sister McCarthy replaced Brenda Lindsey, who stepped down as director for health reasons. Lindsey had succeeded Sister Maureen Lyons, CSJ, a co-founder and long-time director at A Friendly Place.
Representatives of both organizations signed a memorandum of understanding earlier this year transferring management of A Friendly Place to St. Mary's Center.
Carol Johnson, executive director at St. Mary's Center, said that the center is happy to assist A Friendly Place continue its ministry. During this transition, no major changes are expected. A Friendly Place will retain its' name and Sister Lyons will continue her work with AFP donors and other supporters.
A joint committee, with representatives of both organizations, has been formed to assist the transition. For now the committee will focus on learning how the other operates.
Three Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet — Maureen Lyons, Suzanne Steffen and the late Carol O'Marie — opened A Friendly Place in 1990. The daytime center offers a safe place for homeless women to shower, wash their clothes and get off the streets for a while. The nonprofit organization receives financial support from a number of individual supporters, as well as an auxiliary group that organizes fundraisers during the year.
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