Art of Aging: Porter family continues to serve the community

Two important institutions in any community are church and school.

For almost 100 years, one family has worked to give Philadelphians a lift with the church they founded in 1926 and a day care center established in 1980.

Sisters Darlene Davis and Deborah Greasham learned from their grandparents and parents that service to the community is the most important work one can do.

Sixty-five-year-old Deborah Greasham is co-owner of Porter's Day Care.

"My grandfather founded the Church of New Hope Temple Baptist Church in 1926. My father was extremely wise and he started three non-profit organizations," she said.

Their father also started a Gospel group, the Porter Family Singers that took the family up and down the East Coast

And music is still at the heart of everything the Porter family does.

"It's really, really our passion to be able to sing and to be able to touch people's lives," said Greasham.

In 1980, their mother, a teacher, inspired the sisters to open Porter's Daycare and Education Center.

"To fulfill the needs of the community, we're able to bring in the Ronald McDonald Dental Care. We have eye care," said Davis.

"We collaborate with the parents and set specific goals for all our children," added Greasham.

The center located in the city's Logan neighborhood was founded with a mission of improving early education for children in low-income families.

And they work with the Philadelphia School District to offer free Head Start programs.

"We do believe that we are bringing things into our community that doesn't normally exist," said Greasham.

When the daycare first opened, there were just 6 children. Nearly 4 decades later, the center serves hundreds - from infant to pre-k.

And for the sisters, this place is and has always been an extension of family.

"We are doing something that is difficult, but yet, brings us so much pleasure," said

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