August 30, 2018, by Michaela Winberg - Billy Penn
(Photo by Michaela Winerg of Billy Penn)
As the opioid epidemic forces Philly neighborhoods to deal with overloads of people with addiction, welcoming them with open arms is not the norm. But thanks to a forward-thinking community leader, one section of Germantown is doing just that.
On the 700 block of East Chelten Avenue, Reverend Michelle Simmons is known. She’s been the block captain there for a decade, and she owns the role. Simmons’ neighbors, who’ve affectionately dubbed her “Rev,” value her presence.
As it happens, Simmons also operates a certified recovery house. Into the house, which she named Why Not Prosper, she invites women with addiction who’ve recently gotten out of prison and want to maintain their sobriety in a supportive environment.
It’s fair to say that Simmons has broken down a barrier.