Proud Neighbors of Collingswood, established in 1983 as a not-for-profit civic organization with IRS approved 501 (c) (3) status as a public charity. Contributions are tax deductible.
MISSION: Proud Neighbors of Collingswood ‘s mission is to promote awareness about historic preservation in the Collingswood community. We strive to educate by sharing ideas on restoration and preservation with residents, the business community, and local government while working to maintain the historic character of Collingswood.
Please review our Donations and Accomplishments page to see how Proud Neighbors is making a difference in Collingswood and our Ongoing Events page to see how you can participate.
Proud Neighbors grew from a handful of residents who were interested in promoting the historic preservation and improvement of the Collingswood community with a three-fold goal:
- To arrest the decline of the business district.
- To educate Collingswood residents about the historic character of the community.
- To develop an awareness of, and interest in, revitalization committees that led to historic site surveys and historic district designations.
One of our earliest accomplishments was saving a turn-of-the-century home from demolition. Today, Proud Neighbors continues to host speakers and practical hands-on workshops that offer insight about restoration and preservation of architectural features of your home.
Meetings are free and open to the public and are held at the Collingswood Library on the 4th Thursday of the months of February, March, and April. Proud Neighbors of Collingswood would like to keep you informed about meetings and events. Join our e-mail list. Send your email to Info@ProudNeighborsofCollingswood.org or watch for publication of meetings in the “What’s On” newspaper, Collingswood Town Crier, and www.collingswood.com
Annual dues are $15 per household. Please make check payable to Proud Neighbors of Collingswood and mail to 20 East Stiles Avenue, Collingswood, NJ 08108-1915
For the past 33 years, Proud Neighbors of Collingswood has been an outstanding advocate for preservation of the historic character of Collingswood. Founded by a group of volunteers who shared an interest in the restoration of their community, Proud Neighbors of Collingswood offers a variety of programs to inspire residents to appreciate and preserve this town’s historic character.
Our civic organization started as an outgrowth of a Collingswood Junior Women’s Club project that focused on the beautification of the Collingswood downtown business district, which was “suffering from benign decay” in the early 1980s. Sue Yoder and Judy Everts envisioned an expanded group which could include men, as well as community members interested encouraging improved maintenance with an appreciation of our town’s historic architecture. Proud Neighbors working with Bridgeton & Cape May historic preservation advocates, initiated historic site surveys of Collingswood. Other founding members served on our town’s revitalization committee to achieve Collingswood status on national, state, and local historic registers.
In 1986, the corner of one lovely neighborhood was scared by a vacant three-story, turn-of-the-century property sitting neglected in severe disrepair. Offered for sale, news came that an investor wanted to demolish this historic structure and replace it with a two-story duplex, while another prospective buyer showed interest in rehabilitating the home as his residence. Spurred by opposition to this destructive option, our enlightened neighbors sprang into action. Proud Neighbors offered to step in and help clean out the house, thus making the task less formidable for the new owner, who planned to restore the property. Debris removed by our civic group filled six dumpsters and helped to save the home from demolition. Over the years this property has regained its prominence on the block and stands today as a testament to the preservation efforts of our organization.
Seeking to bring further attention to distinctive architectural features of our classic front porches, Proud Neighbors created a Spring event (The Porch Brunch and House Tour) on the Sunday After Mother’s Day to generate interest in its mission and to coincide with National Preservation Week (now a month long National celebration.) Then this group founded, financed and managed the Collingswood Farmers Market, orchestrated five black-tie fundraisers, Gala on the Avenue to benefit preservation and organized seven Old House Workshops to educate residents about historic preservation. These expanded, full-day preservation hands-on training education efforts Old House Workshops won acclaim from the State of New Jersey, as well as, a Community Leadership Advocacy Award from Preservation Alliance for Greater Philadelphia.
In the past ten years alone, Proud Neighbors of Collingswood, non-profit civic volunteers raised over $136,600 to promote historic preservation. Proud Neighbors donations includes $74,000 towards founding the Collingswood Farmers Market, establishing historic preservation training, restoring stage lighting in the Borough’s historic theatre, installing antique-style lighting and pole planters along Haddon Avenue, assisting with downtown façade painting and improvements, funding banner poles for the borough main street, plus Collingswood Community Garden, EcoPlaza Pocket Park, bike racks and bike share program, as well as, Proud Neighbors donation of $58,000 earmarked for Knight Park restoration & tree planting, which includes a pledge of $25,00 toward the copula reconstruction, wood window repair and interior restoration at the 1888 Knight Park House .
With your volunteer efforts, Proud Neighbors can do more for our community. Proud Neighbors of Collingswood, is a 501 (c) (3) public charity that is celebrating its 33rd anniversary of volunteer service by striving to share ideas on restoration and preservation. Our volunteers strive to maintain the historic character of Collingswood.