By Cherri Gregg

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) –A Center City non-profit is fighting homelessness, one person at a time.

The Bethesda Project serves thousands of homeless and formerly homeless men and women each year. Father Domenic Rossi started the organization 33 years ago, and recalls one of his most memorable clients.

“One of the women who first came with us, her name was Angie. She was terrified of hospitals and doctors and even getting into a car with a man. I considered a great step forward for Angie when she agreed to get in a car with me so I could take her to a doctor’s appointment,” Rossi says.

Rossi also says his group provides temporary and permanent housing, as well as social services and the type of support normally provided by family. But these services are threatened by the economy.

“With government cutbacks on so many levels, we struggle to keep up our level of service,” Rossi explains.

Rossi says the group hopes to raise at least a $250,000 at its 15th Annual Gala and Auction on May 1st at Citizens Bank Park. The event will feature Joe Piscopo and Flyers goalie Bernie Parent. For more info, go to

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