The ACTS family shelter in Philadelphia recently inaugurated a vibrant new space where children who are experiencing homelessness can learn and have fun. Called “Multiple Spaces,” it was created as part of the Clinton Foundation’s “Too Small to Fail initiative,” in partnership with the Office of Homeless Services (OHS) and with funding from the William Penn Foundation.
Adjacent to a dining hall and installed within the limits of an auditorium stage, Multiple Spaces is a carefree, childhood oasis. A big blue rug marks its middle, and stickers sprinkle the walls. It contains plush beanbag chairs, low couches, and pillows shaped like lemon tree leaves. Shelves are bursting with books and building blocks. The installation may look simple, but it’s part of a much bigger vision.