William Penn House Annual Reports

The text of recently received Annual Reports are below, with the most recently received at the top and older reports below. To jump to a particular report, simply click the year listed below.

2011 Report 2012 Report 2013 Report 2014 Report 2015 Report
2016 Report  

2016 Annual Report

No report received.

2015 Annual Report

No report received.

2014 Annual Report

In May, William Penn House was one of the twelve homes featured on the Capitol Hill Home and Garden tour. It was a great opportunity to address some deferred maintenance and to reach out to our community. We repainted a number of rooms, shaped up the gardens, built a staircase so the visitors could see the green roof with sedum growing on the Carriage House and to see our rain garden. Over the two days about 1200 people visited the House. As we worked on the House we reflected on where we have been, where we are and where we are going.

Hospitality continues to be a critical service that we provide. At annual occupancy of 70% we are clear that this is an important mission that we support. Our guests are all ages, from around the world. They come as individuals, as groups and as families. This spring we hosted young peoples, such as the 27th year of the 4th grade class of Plymouth Meeting Friends School and 20 youth from Miramar. Our guests were here to lobby, to study, to tour.

Through our Workcamps, we have 5 community garden plots to raise vegetables for disadvantaged neighbors. We glean the fields, we weed the city parks, and we feed the homeless. We engage our community, we truly learn through service. Our road trips include a week in New Orleans, a week in West Virginia and two weeks on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. In each of these trips we partner with established service programs and help them to more readily meet their mission. We are exploring Workcamps in Jamaica. We recognize that we need to change the name of Washington Quaker Workcamps to better reflect who and what we are.

Through our programs activities we also plan world class seminars on human rights, peace and social justice and the myriad issues surrounding AIDS/HIV. We host diverse groups including “Free the Cuban 5”, Peace Corp training, yoga and singing babies. Our goal sit to build bridges and reflect on the fact that each of us has a vision of the truth and that vision becomes clear when we work, live and learn together.

In 2016, William Penn House will celebrate its 50th anniversary as a Quaker facility. In 2017, we will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the construction of the historic house that is so important. And in 2016, I will celebrate my 70th birthday and the welcoming of the next executive director of William Penn House. Over the next three years there will be numerous opportunities to celebrate who we are, where we have been and where we are going.

Byron Sandford

2013 Annual Report

No report received.

2012 Annual Report

No report received.

2011 Annual Report

In December 2010, I completed 10 years here in Washington at William Penn House. It has been an amazing decade and I have been enriched through the experience. This past year has been busy, eventful and continues with our seeking to live our lives with purpose using the Quaker testimonies as our guide.

We continue our commitment to nurturing the gifts and leadings of our staff. We are pleased that during 2010, the Hospitality Coordinator, Faith Kelley, and the Workcamps Coordinator, Greg Woods were both in their mid 20s. Both brought unique gifts and insights to their jobs as well as solid work ethics. We also recruited 5 young adults to serve on our Board of Directors. These young people are not ensnared with how things were but are motivated by how things can be. Through our internship program, we seek to provide genuine opportunities for growth and seasoning of these gifted young people. But with people at the start of their careers and through the very nature of internships, we experienced turnovers of staff. In 2010, Wambani Lusenaka of Kenya and Amanda Haase of Chicago completed their internships and returned or continued their graduate studies. Greg Woods also left for some reflection on his next challenge. After living for several months on his family’s Missouri farm, Greg will be on the staff of Pendle Hill for the summer then will attend Princeton Theological School. Harry Caterson of Bucks County, PA, joined us as an intern.

Recognizing that the economy was uncertain, we reduced our staff to control our overhead. A couple of years ago we changed from a staff janitor to a cleaning service. Recently we switched our payroll to a payroll service. We delayed replacing departing staff.

We started the year with blizzard like conditions here and elsewhere. This led to many cancellations in February. With the soft economy our numbers of guests was slightly less than last year. We still had 7280 guests, including 61 groups. 358 young people participated in 18 Workcamps. Those Workcamps included two weeks in South Dakota with the Lakota Indians, a week in New Orleans and a week in a rural community in West Virginia. We continued our hosting of over 30 Wilmington College students participating in the FCNL Lobby Days. Our guests ranged from a troop of Brownies to senior citizens. We offer a unique and inexpensive place for individuals and groups to stay while visiting Washington.

We continue to develop the concept of Radical Hospitality where we offer a warm and open place for dialogue and conversation. Through open listening to others, we are affirmed in our belief that there is that of God in all and we can then set aside our tendency to believe that we are following the only spiritual path. Brad Ogilvie continues to provide a needed voice and leadership on all AIDS/HIV issues.

As summer approaches, we will be visiting different yearly meetings. We look forward to the opportunity to share with you.

Byron Sandford, Executive Director