Gather the Spirit for Justice...Uniting for the Common Good

 Common Ground Community Center 

Gather the Spirit for Justice
An open-door center of hope and dignity to strengthen community on Allison Hill

Common Ground Coffee is Open!

We offer a free, safe, welcoming place where Allison Hill residents and families can meet and socialize every Saturday morning from 9 until 11. Some weeks, we may just have informal coffee, tea, and light snacks for adults, and a play area for kids. But other weeks we will offer live music, inspirational and informative speakers, productive activities, and fun!

Join us

every Saturday 9am-11am

Located in Christ Lutheran Church

124 South 13th Street, Harrisburg

at the Thompson Alley entrance

Special Events at Common Ground Coffee

Saturday March 4th at 9:30am

Reverend Yvette Davis

speaking on

The Commonwealth Monument Project and Harrisburg’s Old 8th Ward



The “Gathering at the Crossroads” monument is located at Fourth and Walnut streets in Harrisburg. It features four people who lived or spoke in the Old 8th Ward: Thomas Morris Chester, Jacob T. Compton, William Howard Day and Frances Ellen Walker Harper. It also includes names of 100 prominent African Americans and others who lived in Harrisburg in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.  Before it was demolished to expand Capitol Park in the early 20th century, the Old 8th Ward was home to a largely African American and immigrant population and included conductors on the Underground Railroad, abolitionists, educators, doctors, business owners, laborers, political figures and Civil War veterans. The monument also celebrates the 15th Amendment, which gave Black men the right to vote, and the 19th Amendment, which granted women’s suffrage. (PennLive Aug. 29, 2021) 


Rev. Davis is director of Dickinson’s Popel Shaw Center for Race & Ethnicity.




Community Center Hours Now Available by Appointment

As business and residents emerge from health and safety protocols established during the COVID-19 pandemic, Gather the Spirit for Justice Community Center is now accepting limited appointments. Neighbors and community members in need of ID and other services should call 717-512-9449 for appointment availability. With limited staff and volunteers, please understand that not all requests can be accommodated. We are working to return services to the community with the health and safety of our staff, guests, volunteers, and the greater Allison Hill and Harrisburg communities in mind. 

We appreciate your understanding and welcome any questions at [email protected] or 717-512-9449.

Did You Know...?

...In 2019, approximately 75% of Gather the Spirit for Justice's revenue has come from donations? The remainder came through grants. Did you also know that our operating expenses exhaust more than 80% of our expenses? This leaves us with very little on which to improve our programs and services. GTSFJ currently offers two programs:

Common Ground Community Center (CGCC) is an open door environment that welcomes members of the community for a light snack, help to obtain food vouchers or a state ID, a safe respite from the stresses of the neighborhood, and access to newspapers and magazines. In the past, CGCC has also offered personal hygiene items, books for adults and children, and clothing donations to help our community.

While providing valuable community services, the CGCC has evolved into a blended and extended family. Neighbors and guests often share their thanks for the value GTSFJ brings in building relationships and providing an environment of respect, dignity, and love. 

As a not-for-profit organization, we cannot provide the Common Ground Community Center programs without you. As we look to expand our programming to strengthen citizenship, engagement, and action in Allison Hill, we need you. GTSFJ conducts fundraisers at select times throughout the year, but your regular monthly donation would be greatly appreciated. A $32 donation each month covers one photo ID. Just $10 or $20 or more each month can help us continue our mission to serve our neighbors in Allison Hill.

Please consider a monthly donation to Gather the Spirit for Justice. Payment can be made via PayPal through our website, or by check to our mailing address at 904 North Third Street, Apt. 3, Harrisburg, PA 17102.

Power to the Hill (P2H)

P2H encourages and sustains expanded voter engagement, and more active citizenship and community action, including voter education, voter registration, and engagement among neighbors and local businesses in the Allison Hill community.