Aswalos House reunion recalls spiritual journey
In 1968, after the death of Martin Luther King Jr., Thelma Cromwell-Moss opened the Aswalos House on Seaver Street as an after-school enrichment program and a workforce-development program for teenagers that focused on secretarial skills and GED preparation. The program was part of the YWCA.
“No longer a building, the spirit of Aswalos is a part of anyone and everyone that was fortunate enough to participate within its soul,” said Cromwell-Moss, author of “My Lighted Path: the Spiritual Journey of a Black Woman on the Road Less Travelled.”
Late in 1990, with the help of a HUD grant and a federal grant to the YWCA, the Aswalos House was re-purposed into a transitional housing facility for teenage mothers and their children. The Aswalos House for Teen Mothers provided counseling services, schooling, job training and the coordination of permanent housing to its temporary inhabitants.
The name, Aswalos, is an acronym for “All Sisters with a Lot of Soul.” While the house has been shut down for lack of funding, those who participated in the YWCA program at any point in their lives are invited to attend a reunion event hosted by Cromwell-Moss, at the Dudley Branch Library on June 28 from noon to 4 p.m.