Digital Inclusion, Equity, and Access | Mercy Neighborhood Ministries Hot Spot

By Lu F. RSS Thu, January 9, 2020

The Free Library cares about digital inclusion, equity, and access, and has expanded beyond the walls of our 54 neighborhood libraries to partner with area nonprofits, providing free access to technology and programming to increase the digital skills of community members in areas that need it most. In anticipation of announcing our next Free Library Hot Spot, we are shining a light on our current partner organizations.

Mercy Neighborhood Ministries hosts an all-encompassing community center in the heart of Tioga-Nicetown at 20th and Venango. The Sisters of Mercy have worked in partnership with this community for over 40 years with this site, the Mercy Family Center, opening in 2009. Located in the first "green" building in North Philadelphia, The Mercy Family Center is a renovated manufacturing building, offering services for tots, elders, and everyone in between. Since opening, they have made space for the Free Library, hosting a Hot Spot, open 1:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m.,  Monday-Friday. Together, Mercy Neighborhood Ministries and the Free Library have worked to provide resources and quality services to the area.

The wide array of service Mercy has built include the Adult Day Program, year-round childcare, adult education services, and so much more. The Adult Day Program provides care for adults 60 and over, with fun activities throughout the day from a loving staff supplemented with nursing services from local universities. This program also hosts workshops, a weekly Alzheimer’s Caregivers Support Group, and Bible Study.

The childcare enrichment programming, headed by Ms. Barbara Coleman, includes Head Start and Pre-K Counts preschool, afterschool programming, and a summer camp. Mercy promotes the SHARE Food Program, which provides the option of heavily discounted Mercy Meal food packages for the community. Their team has also provided backpacks, coats, toys, and even Thanksgiving turkeys to the families of those in Mercy child care. 

There is also an adult education program headed by Sister Maureen Conklin. It is an official partner of the Philadelphia Office of Adult Education, providing one-on-one tutoring, GED preparation, computer classes, and core skill and literacy building. 

If you are interested in any of the services provided by Mercy Neighborhood Ministries, please call 215-227-4393 or reach out online at

Have a question for Free Library staff? Please submit it to our Ask a Librarian page and receive a response within two business days.

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