LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) – Holy Rosary Institute, a once thriving center for education in Lafayette, is set to receive half a million dollars in state funding this year.
Governor John Bel Edwards signed House Bill 2 into law.
The legislation includes $500,000 for phase one of the Holy Rosary Redevelopment Project.
From 1913 until 1993, Holy Rosary Institute was a staple in the Lafayette community.
But since the doors closed more than two decades ago, A group of people who love to what the institution stood for are now fighting to keep it standing.
“It was a great loss when the school closed.” Mary Goodie is a proud graduate of Holy Rosary Institute class of 1963; her sister and three children are graduates as well.
Goodie says she was heartbroken when the school closed but hope is restored as the preservation of the 107 building comes to fruition.
“It shows that there is still believe in Holy Rosary has done and can do”, Goodie said.
Over the next four fiscal years, Holy Rosary will receive 4 million dollars in state funding to go toward the master plan for the site.
Dustin Cravins, President of the Holy Rosary Redevelopment Board says, “That includes an urgent care facility, and educational component, some retail space and so many other things.”
District 96 State Representative, Terry Landry, has played a key role in securing money for redevelopment.
Landry says preserving the history of Holy Rosary is vital
“This was built for the purpose of educating the African American community in a time during Jim Crow laws where it was really frowned on to train and educate African-Americans. That’s part of our history,” he explains.
Landry says the foundation should receive the money this fall and stabilization will begin shortly after.
Once the building is stabilized, board members say we could see a fully functioning facility in roughly five years.