"FROM WHENCE WE CAME"
The Bel Alton Community Development Corporation (CDC) is a community-based nonprofit organization whose mission has been to renovate its former African-American High School and return it to its new use as a Community Development Center. The school was scheduled to be demolished in the early 1990s due to its deteriorated condition. Bel Alton alumni offered to save it by securing funds for renovation and return it to benefit the entire community. Bel Alton CDC was initially incorporated as an Alumni Association and received its provisional tax-exempt stabs in March 1993. Its goal was to renovate the school by preserving the original exterior and establishing the Community Development Center. We received our permanent tax-exempt status as a 501(C)(3) organization in 1998.
Our charter was amended in November 2001 to change our name to The Bel Alton High School Alumni Association Community Development Corporation. As we have expanded our membership from alumni to friends who support our mission, we are now doing business as the Bel Alter Community Development Corporation.
Bel Alton High School was in existence from 1938 until the integration of schools in Charles County in 1965. It is located in Bel Alton, Maryland, a Village about six miles south of La Plata. The school property consists of 12.67 acres of land and has 35,200 square feet of space. There are two structures: the main school building of 18,800 square feet, and an adjacent gymnasium and industrial arts shop consisting of 16,400 square feet.
Renovation of our Community Development Center was completed in 2008, at which time we received a Certificate of Occupancy and moved into the building. The Center serves a target population of low and moderate-income children and families. Our programs and services include job creation, workforce development, health education, and dental services. We have a variety of fundraising activities to help fund our operating costs.
Our health educator programs have mainly been funded by the University of Maryland School of Medicine with the goal of encouraging individuals experiencing cancer health disparities to seek early screening and diagnosis. We have also offered seminars to help the participant understand ethical issues in medical care and to consider clinical trials as an option in the treatment of various cancers and chronic diseases.
Bel Alton has a Café (Miss Motleys) with a capacity of 176 that is available for dining and for catered events on or offsite. The Cafe also serves as a multipurpose mom and is open to rent for social or other activities. We also have classroom size spaces in the building available for rent, short, or beg term. We have a full-service Regional Dental Center that provides comprehensive dental care for children and adults and is open, by appointment, six days a week. We accept most dental insurances, self-payers, and Medicaid. Call (301) 539-7904 to make an appointment.
Bel Alton CDC has been administered for over 20 years by volunteer Seniors who serve as both Board and staff. Our immediate goals are to refire our mortgage and to secure paid professional staff to manage daily operations and enhance the programs and services of the organization.
The mission of the Bel Alton High School Community Development Corporation is to rehabilitate our former High School and to establish programs that help people with low income improve the quality of their lives. We also assist with hall rental, wedding receptions, reunions, proms, and banquet Hall usage. Workforce development, job creation, and health promotions are the primary means to accomplish our mission.
Bel Alton Regional Dental Center
We received funding for a Regional Dental Center that was opened in December 2012. Our full-service dental office serves adults and children throughout Southern Maryland on a fee for service basis.
We have launched a significant effort to increase the membership of our Community Development Corporation (CDC) to secure more volunteers to help us move our organization to a higher level. We are reaching out to friends of our CDC who can enhance our significant initial effort of renovating the school. By working with us to expand our job creation, workforce development, and health education efforts on behalf of low-income residents of Charles County. We are also in need of assistance from people with business and resource development skills that can help us meet our facility's operating costs. A membership form is enclosed by which you can join our organization. Dues are $50.00 a year. You may join online or by regular mail. If you wish, you may also volunteer for specific duties concerning any of our named focus areas. Some professional skills that we critically need include accounting, word processing. Business administration, grants writing, technology training, restaurant management, and marketing, events planning, building management, and commercial construction management. We sincerely need your help if we are to sustain our efforts at helping those less fortunate. Please join us!