By Cassandra Grosse
The original Nova Scotia Home for Colored Children (NSHCC) has been renamed the Kinney Place (KP), designed to be a Black business incubator and an intergenerational hub for the African Nova Scotian community.
The Kinney Place is named after James Alexandra Ross Kinney, a founder of the NSHCC and its first superintendent.
On June 6, 1921, the NSHCC provided employment opportunities for members of the African Nova Scotian communities, and a roof over the heads of up to 65 orphaned Black children. The NSHCC property was also home to Nova Scotia’s first and only African Nova Scotian, Black-owned financial institution, The George Washington Carver Credit Union, which later relocated to Lower Partridge River Road in East Preston.
The newly renovated 100-year-old building is designed to provide a common outdoor gathering place to grill pizza in the outdoor stone oven and an indoor café. Kinney Place is fitted with office spaces, a boardroom and arts room available for use. Community members will also be able to book a message and hair appointments in the new year.
The office for member of the Legislative Assembly for Preston, Angela Simmonds has been relocated to KP along with the non-profit organization 902 Man Up.
Senator Wanda Thomas Bernard and Mayor Savage were among the dignitaries in attendance for the grand opening on October 23rd along will a full crowd of community members and former NSHCC employees.
“This is another great day for our community. The opening of Kinney Place recognizes the historical contribution this building has to this province and country” says Kathleen Mitchel, President of the Board of Akoma. Akoma is approximately 320 acres of land in the Preston Township. Originally purchased by the provincial government in 1917 for the Nova Scotia Home for Colored Children, the land was gifted to the African United Baptist Association (AUBA). The AUBA later transferred the land to Akoma Holdings Inc. Kinney Place is one of the holdings under Akoma Holding Inc., a registered charitable organization.