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CED Clinic Provides Website, Other Services to Local Home for Elderly

With assistance from Yale Law School’s Community and Economic Development (CED) Clinic, The Hannah Gray Residential Care Home on Dixwell Avenue has launched a new website with information about its mission, history and services and a tool that allows the public to make electronic donations. The site,, also includes an archive of historic photos and links to community resources. The website is one of a number of services the CED Clinic has provided to the Hannah Gray Home since it accepted the Home as a client in 2005.

Elisa Lui, assistant student director of the CED Clinic, built and is maintaining the website.

“The Hannah Gray Home is a unique project for the Clinic because of its historical significance to the New Haven community,” said Lui. “The residential care home was established by the will of a heroic African-American woman and abolitionist who died in 1861 and left her home in trust for the benefit of ‘indigent colored females.’ The Home closed due to financial and management problems in 1996, but we've been working with other community groups to get it re-opened. It is very rewarding to see how a 19th century dream is becoming a 21st century reality.”

In addition to developing the website, the CED Clinic has helped the project with a number of other tasks, including getting a new Certificate of Need issued for the home, securing $900,000 of additional funding, getting the Probate Court to remove race and gender restrictions on residency and seating a new board of directors and new officers. It is currently working on selecting a management agent and developing a management plan, and it will be handling closings on grant funding and loans.

With the Clinic’s help, and support from the Yale University Office of New Haven and State Affairs and other community partners, The Hannah Gray Home is expected to re-open in early 2008. It will offer 24-hour supervised care and supportive services to low-income elderly individuals in the Dixwell and Greater New Haven communities.

The CED team working on the project is led by Clinical Professor of Law and Supervising Attorney Robert Solomon and student director Jason Navarino ’07. Current team members include assistant student director Elisa Lui ARC ’07 and students Mothusi Pahl SOM ’07 and Natalya Shnitser ’09. Former team members include Tiffani Brown GRD ’05, Mark Dinner SOM ’06, Hans Leaman LAW/GRD ’07, Laura Trice GRD ’06, Noelle Grohmann ’08, Joe Primo DIV ’06, Angela Kühne (staff at FES), Marisa Rauchway (Boston University Law School ’08), Tomás Carbonell ’08 and Sara Eisenstat FES/SOM ’07.

The CED Clinic is part of the Jerome N. Frank Legal Services Organization (LSO) at Yale Law School, which provides legal representation to individuals and organizations unable to afford private attorneys. CED focuses its efforts on community and economic development in the greater New Haven area, assisting small businesses and nonprofit organizations involved in affordable housing and economic development efforts. The CED Clinic is one of more than a dozen clinics in the Jerome N. Frank LSO.

Click here to learn more about the Jerome N. Frank Legal Services Organization and the Community and Economic Development Clinic.