The Washington Women’s Foundation is honored to invest in Chief Seattle Club’s capital campaign, “A Place to Call Home: ʔálʔal,” to build housing and social services for Seattle’s Native population adjacent to their current location in Pioneer Square.
“ʔálʔal is the Lushootseed word for home,” says Colleen Echohawk, Chief Seattle Club’s Executive Director. “We’ll have 80 units of housing, a medical clinic, and workforce development. It will look and feel like a Native development from the inside out.”
“It’s a great opportunity to talk about the Coast Salish people, their long history in Pioneer Square, and tell that story in the architecture,” says Johnpaul Jones, Principal of Jones & Jones Architects and Heather Hargesheimer, Senior Associate.
“When a Native person looks up at the building,” says Annie Xuan Clark, Development Consultant, “the patterns and artwork will mean something to them. They’ll see themselves and reconnect. When they enter the building, it will feel like home.”
“This expansion, this optimistic, forward-looking campaign to grow the facility right at the core of this remarkable city, is to not just help solve the problem of Native homelessness, but to celebrate Native life that we all spring from. We all need to get on board with that,” says Martha Kongsgaard, ʔálʔal Supporter and a Washington Women’s Foundation Board member.
“When we bring Native people inside, into secure housing,” says Colleen Echohawk, “we are going to see their ideas come forward in amazing ways. We, as a Native-led organization, can provide culturally appropriate housing that will serve our relatives in a way that no one else can.”