Casa Myrna Finds New Home in Dorchester with $3.25 Million Support from MassDevelopment

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BOSTON–MassDevelopment has issued a $3,250,000 tax-exempt bond on behalf of Casa Myrna Vazquez, Inc., Boston’s largest provider of domestic and dating-violence awareness efforts and support for survivors.

Casa Myrna will use bond proceeds to buy and renovate the historic Rubina Ann Guscott building and an adjacent building in Dorchester’s Grove Hall neighborhood, which the organization will then use as its headquarters. The buildings will include space for services, a youth-managed clothing boutique or café, offices, and public meeting rooms. Cambridge Trust Company purchased the bond, which MassDevelopment enhanced with a guarantee.

“Casa Myrna offers a safe and supportive harbor, and through its outreach programs helps address and prevent incidences of domestic violence in our communities,” said MassDevelopment President and CEO Lauren Liss. “We’re proud to help the organization continue this honorable work at its new headquarters in Dorchester.”

Casa Myrna was founded in 1977 as a volunteer-run shelter in Boston’s South End for abused women and their children. It added residential and programmatic capacity over the years in response to emerging needs. Each year, Casa Myrna serves more than 2,000 survivors and answers nearly 30,000 calls by multilingual advocates at its SafeLink hotline, the Commonwealth’s statewide domestic violence hotline. Casa Myrna also works to prevent domestic and dating violence through outreach, education, and awareness programs for teens and adults.

“Grove Hall is at the epicenter of our work with survivors of domestic and dating violence, so we are thrilled to locate our new headquarters at the historic Rubina Ann Guscott building,” said Stephanie Brown, Casa Myrna CEO. “Rubina’s legacy of justice and social change will serve as daily inspiration to us. We thank MassDevelopment and Cambridge Trust for investing in Casa Myrna to make our vision a reality.”

MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development agency, works with businesses, nonprofits, financial institutions, and communities to stimulate economic growth across the Commonwealth. During FY2018, MassDevelopment financed or managed 384 projects generating investment of more than $4.1 billion in the Massachusetts economy. These projects are estimated to create or support 10,994 jobs and build or rehabilitate 830 housing units.