Renaissance Community Development Corporation a.k.a. Jefferson Manor Development Corporation, Inc., (JMDC) was incorporated in 1985 and obtained its nonprofit, 501 (c) 3 tax-exempt status. On June 19th, 1985 JMDC purchased Jefferson Manor as a Planned Unit Development (PUD) with the assistance of the Philadelphia Savings Fund Society and the City of Philadelphia.
Built in 1958, Jefferson Manor, a complex of 106 town-homes and 120 garden-style apartments, was one of the first housing developments designated by the City of Philadelphia for primarily working class African families, a component of the redevelopment efforts sought during the early 1960s period of urban renewal. This was a true Renaissance for that period given the dated housing that permeated the boundaries of North Philadelphia during that time.
In 1985, the 106 Jefferson Manor town-homes were sold primarily to their occupants. JMDC also identified subsidies for senior citizen residents to assist them with the purchase of their homes. JMDC secured the services of The Philadelphia Rehabilitation Plan, to provide mortgage and credit counseling assistance to the middle and low-income families seeking to purchase a home for the first time.
Twenty-five years ago Jefferson Manor tenants finally realized a dream fulfilled. Residents, tenants, technical team members, and other supporters joined in a jubilant celebration to bring light to this significant conversion from renters to first-time homeowners. By 1990, only five (5) years after its purchase, JMDC burned the mortgage with PSFS satisfying the loan as paid in full.
During the years following the successful acquisition of Jefferson Manor, the surrounding community began experiencing the deterioration of its physical infrastructure, an exodus of jobs from the community, closing of retail stores, and a rapid increase in the neighborhood blight. Working with businesses and communities in the east Girard Avenue area, JMDC was instrumental in organizing a community survey that called for restoration of retail centers, rebuilding of the physical environment, creation of jobs, housing and economic opportunity for its residents. To meet this challenge, JMDC saw the need to expand its mission and services area in order to serve the needs of the larger, surrounding community.
In 1996, JMDC changed its name to Renaissance Community Development Corporation (RCDC), to serve as the catalyst for the development of community programs, services, projects, and facilities within its organizational boundaries. Beginning with revitalizing the community through the acquisition of 226 housing units and the sale of 106 town-homes to first time home-buyers, and with zero default on mortgages, some twenty-five years later, and through providing quality, affordable, low to moderate income housing, the Renaissance Garden Apartment complex continues to build a sustained community for generations to come.
Some of the programs of Renaissance Community Development Corporation include Little Feet Child Care facility, established in 1995, providing child are services for over 70 children of working and welfare parents through the Head Start Program; construction of the Heritage Village II Plaza; and the upcoming development of Renaissance Center, for the creation of new employment opportunities within our target area.