Tenants and Workers United opened the Arlandria-Chirilagua Community Center in 2004 as a place for community to come together in struggle and in celebration.
The Arlandria-Chirilagua Community Center opened in December 2004 after a three-year campaign led by youth and adults of the Arlandria-Chirilagua community and over $100,000 in small donations made by TWU membership. In addition, contributions from the City of Alexandria, the Meyer Foundation, the Morris and Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation, U.S. Representative James Moran, and BB&T Bank helped make the Center possible. Alexandria United Teens painted murals on the walls to celebrate the growing diversity of Northern Virginia and volunteers from Saint Mary’s created a Library for Social Change.
The Arlandria-Chirilagua Community Center houses a multi-use community room, teen activity room, technology center, the offices of TWU, and non-profit and commercial rental offices. Community groups, unions, people of faith and our members use this space to work, socialize and struggle together. Over the years, weddings have been held, campaigns hatched, and victories celebrated in the community room. The legacy continues today as TWU staff and members conduct leadership institutes, volunteers teach English, literacy and computer classes, and local medical care providers hold community clinics providing critical services such as vision testing, cholesterol and HIV screening.