By India Smith, Special to the Dorchester Reporter, Apr. 24, 2014
With renovations almost complete, the Louis D. Brown Peace Institute has set June 1 for its move into its new quarters at 15 Christopher St. in Fields Corner, two blocks from its present home and half a block from Town Field, home base for the organization’s annual Mother’s Day Walk for Peace.
“We’re on schedule,” said LDB founder and director Tina Chery, noting that it was by accident that she learned last October that the institute would have to move. “Someone at Fields Corner Main Streets just mentioned in passing that the building we are in now was being sold,” Chery said.
“We knew we were welcome to stay, but we would have had to share the floor with another tenant,” she said. This raised security and privacy issues for the families the institute serves, so Chery promptly began looking for another location.
Her first concern was to find space in the same neighborhood from which the institute could provide immediate services to survivors following a homicide. Another priority was finding space to continue LDB’s innovative therapies for children and adults. This meant private offices where families could consult with clinicians and social workers and open areas for music and expressive movement, including an area where children could create miniature worlds in sand. The institute would also need space for volunteers, interns, and the administrative team.
“Our present space evolved as our services evolved,” Chery said. “I didn’t know if we could find another location that could accommodate so many different kinds of activities.” However, a few weeks, later the realtor Alan Issokson suggested that Chery take a look at a vacant house nearby. His company, Levenbaum-Issokson Realty, Inc., had purchased the house at 15 Christopher St. ten years earlier from Action for Boston Community Development. ABCD had been using it as an educational center, according to Issokson.