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    A rendering of how the Steer Bowl building will look after construction is complete on renovations to turn it into the new Graham Crisis Center. Among some of the improvements will be the addition of several dorm-style rooms which can hold women and children under different circumstances. Crisis Center Board President Joanie Edwards said the board hopes construction can begin in April and will be ready for clients of the center at the end of July or the first of August. (Contributed photo)

Crisis Center board envisions bright future, launches new fundraising campaign

With a fresh board and a bright outlook towards the future, the Graham Area Crisis Center is hoping to make new leaps and bounds within the area through their new fundraising campaign One Thousand Partners and with the future opening of their new center.

Board President Joanie Edwards said the new fundraising campaign is looking for 1,000 donations of $15 a month to help with the operation of the local organization.

“We are also asking for a $15 a month pledge for our ongoing monthly expenses to help us get a new person hired for a new position we have open which we actually hired someone today,” Edwards said. “(...) We have some ongoing expenses that we need to maintain and we know donations are down everywhere, but what we would like is to just to ask for a partnership, like I said it is called One Thousand Partners, and that partnership will help us meet our monthly obligations of helping the people in the community and of course we are building our Graham Crisis Center.”

The Crisis Center is currently located at the old Young County Jail building at 503 Second St. The organization was donated the 11,000 square ft. Steer Bowl building at 1444 Fourth St. so they could move and renovate the location.

“We are in the process of getting finalized architectural plans from our architect out of Wichita (Falls),” Edwards said. “We pick those up next Wednesday, so we were gifted the Steer Bowl (...) and have 11,000 square feet. We are retrofitting that into dorm rooms and we are going to have a meeting area for the public to be able to use and then in the back and segregated from the public area is the crisis center where we serve women and children in crisis.”

Edwards said the location will have a total of eight rooms where a mother and child could potentially stay if there was an emergency. The rooms will be set up like a dorm room with a kitchen area, living area and bedroom area. Edwards said they are looking at finding scholarships for the women using two of the one-year occupancy rooms so they can put them through a year at North Central Texas College in Graham.

“We are going to bring in programs for GEDs, continuing education,” she said. “We are going to bring in enrichment programs to our clients that even if they are not staying there they can come to learn about managing their finances. We have different counseling sessions coming in for domestic abuse, nutrition programs, we plan to offer a lot of value to the community for their support.”

She said the board hopes construction can begin in April and will be ready for clients of the center at the end of July or the first of August.

Edwards said the board has been revitalized since she joined as president a year ago and are motivated to provide for area women and children.

“We are not the board that met every three or four years, we meet monthly,” she said. “We are on a mission to make this the best opportunity for people in need county-wide. We also serve Jack County, we serve Olney which is a part of Young County, we also serve Breckenridge and Stephens County. We have people come in from Palo Pinto County. They are not just regional, local people, they are counties apart.”

Donations to the organization can be mailed to the Graham Area Crisis Center, auto drafted at local banks in the area or made online at the center’s website at grahamcrisiscenter.org. For more information about the center or about making a donation, call Edwards at 817-598-8633.

For the full story, see the Wednesday, Feb. 12 edition of The Graham Leader.



The Graham Leader

620 Oak Street
P.O. Box 600
Graham, Texas 76450
Phone: (940) 549-7800
Fax: (940) 228-0589