Rainbow Village has completed fundraising for a three-story 21,000-square-foot Community Center at its Duluth campus. The $2.9-million center will house Rainbow Village’s children and youth programs, adult life skills classes, a kitchen, dining hall, media center, and chapel.
The Community Center represents Phase 2 of Rainbow Village’s “Building Strong Communities . . . One Family at a Time campaign. Rainbow Village is a transformational housing community for homeless families with children on Ga. Hwy. 120. Most of the heads of households at Rainbow Village are women fleeing lives of domestic violence and poverty.
The dining hall will allow Rainbow Village residents, staff and volunteers to share meals, attend programs and participate in special events.
The center will also house an early childhood education center on site serving children 6 weeks through four years of age.
Work on the Community Center is scheduled to begin immediately with Schoppman Construction as the contractor, according to a news release issued by Rainbow Village. The community center will be located on the site of the former Rainbow Village quadraplexes on Fox Street. Completion is anticipated in the second quarter of 2014.
Generous gifts were made by individuals, families, foundations and businesses toward the campaign. The final $400,000 contribution to complete Phase 2 funding and enable construction on the Community Center to begin came from Frank Circelli, founder and chairman of the Duluth-based Gem Shopping Network. His gift also allowed Rainbow Village to secure $500,000 from a foundation that required all other funds be raised before releasing the grant.
The “Building Strong Communities . . . One Family at a Time” campaign involves three phases that will result in a 30-family village supported by the Community Center and the Family Service Center. Phase 1 consisting of the Family Center and two six-unit apartment buildings opened in the spring of 2011.
“When we launched the campaign, we knew that many generous investors with a passion for helping the homeless would step out in faith, and they have not disappointed us,” Rainbow Village CEO Nancy Yancey said in the news release. “We are immensely honored and proud of the support we’ve received to be able to move into the next phase of the campaign and ensure Rainbow Village will continue to impact lives for generations to come. We are forever indebted to the generosity and blessing of Frank Circelli and the other investors in this campaign, and we can never say it enough: Thank You.”
Rainbow Village is continuing efforts to raise $1.2 million for Phase 3 to build three additional apartment buildings and $1.7 for operational support. When all three phases are completed, Ranbow Village will triple its capacity with the ability to serve up to 180 individuals at a time.