Grace A.M.E. Zion Church was founded in 1919 as Patchogue’s first black church, located at the corner of Grant Place and Cleveland Street.

Today, the church has a small but still very active congregation.

And the churchgoers are in need of enough funds to build an ADA-compliant wheelchair ramp, and several necessary upgrades.

The church has partnered with the Greater Patchogue Foundation, Inc., the charitable nonprofit arm of the Greater Patchogue Chamber of Commerce, in fundraising efforts.

A call for help went out this week from the church and foundation. Construction is expected to get underway in early spring, should the money come in.

Read: Patchogue’s first black church celebrates 100 (Newsday, 2019)

Engineer Jason Pontieri is leading design efforts, and is expected to present his ideas to church leaders soon, according to an announcement.

“Once the plan is selected, Jason will prepare the permit application,” the announcement reads.

The Village Board is waiving its building permit fees.

Rebuilding Together Long Island, another nonprofit, has committed to construct the ramp, subject to review.

“Rebuilding Together Long Island will evaluate the plan and we’ll begin soliciting for materials contributors,” said a representative with the foundation. “We think we can get both materials and the concrete work contributed.”

HOW TO HELP

Donations to:  

The Greater Patchogue Foundation, 15 North Ocean Avenue, Patchogue, NY, 11772. Or call 1-631-207-1000 for more information. Checks should be made payable to the Greater Patchogue Foundation. Note in the memo section “For Grace Church” Contributions are tax deductible.

Any suggestions on potential donors or grants should be directed to Thoma Ferb at Tom_Ferb@hotmail.com. Or call 1-917-225-7411.