by Kaitlin Jackson
A Grand Opening to celebrate the completion of the Catholic Charities Health Care Center located on the Immigration and Refugee Assistance campus, now that both health care providers are operational, will be held at 3 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 16 in the converted former Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary Church, 10 Herkimer St., Buffalo. Brief remarks will begin at 3:30 p.m. All are invited.
Mobile Primary Care began providing medical care at the site in early 2016 and Baker Victory Dental Services recently was approved to start offering dental care as well.
The clinic offers a one-stop option for primary medical and dental care for refugees who are arriving through Catholic Charities.
Speaking at the event will be Catholic Charities Chief Executive Officer Dennis C. Walczyk, Diocesan Director Sister Mary McCarrick, Baker Victory Services Chief Executive Officer Terese Scofidio and Mobile Primary Care Chief Medical Officer James Collins, MD.
In addition, a plaque remembering the families of the former parish, and the women religious and clergy who served there through 2008, when the parish merged into Our Lady of Hope in Buffalo, will be dedicated, thanks to the generosity of Rev. Angelo Chimera who served the parish from 1989 to 2008.
Reconstruction of the church sanctuary, which was designed to retain much of the space’s architecture, is striking and creative in its design and energy efficient. It was completed in January 2016. The facility also houses offices for Catholic Charities’ Immigration and Refugee Assistance case managers and a community meeting room.
“The completion of the Health Care Center is the realization of a dream, and we are thrilled to be able to share it with the community,” said Dennis Walczyk.
The site represents another in a long line of creative re-use examples by Catholic Charities of former church buildings. Development partners were McGuire Development, architects Lauer-Manguso Associates and R&P Oak Hill Construction.