At a time when its food and clothing ministries are serving roughly 1,000 individuals a month, the Greenfield Area Christian Center is still trying to complete the new building it started it started a couple years ago.
“We’re shooting to have it done by summer; be it the end or the beginning we’re not sure,” GACC Board of Trustees Chairman Lanny Bryant said Friday. “We’d like to have it so New Directions can move in next school year. That’s our goal.
“The reason it’s taking a little longer is because we’re trying to finish it without having to borrow any money.”
A project with an original $439,000 price tag, Bryant said the GACC needs approximately $80,000, and some volunteer work, to complete the building. It has about $40,000 in the bank.
The exterior of the building has been done for a while, with the exception of the parking lot and a couple catch basins. On the inside, the insulation has just been completed and dry wall is next, followed by interior doors, kitchen cabinets (which Wouldn’t It Be Nice in Greenfield has donated and is going to install), etc.
When the 172-foot by 42-foot building on North Fifth Street is complete, it will house New Directions, the GACC’s youth ministry program for students in grades 7-12; the GACC Food Pantry; a gymnasium; a relocated Borreson Chapel; and a place for senior citizens events, something Bryant said the Greenfield currently doesn’t have.
The GACC Clothing Ministry will remain in its location across the street that also currently houses the food ministry.
The food and clothing ministries are open each Friday starting around noon. Bryant said volunteers donate about 200 hours a month to the clothing ministry, 150 hours a month to the food ministry and 300 hours a month to New Directions.
“That’s something we’re pretty proud of here in Greenfield,” Bryant said of New Directions. “We have a community youth group not affiliated with any particular church. It has a full-time director hired by the GACC and a lot of adult volunteers. I don’t think I’ve ever saw anything like it any other community. It’s very unique and we’ve been doing it now for about 20 years.”
Bryant said the GACC budget runs about $78,000 annually for the food and clothing ministries, plus another $50,000 for New Directions, but the youth program funds itself.
Last year, the food ministry served 3,739 families in the Greenfield school district and a total of 11,132 individuals, including 3,609 children.
Bryant said the numbers are similar for the clothing ministry.
Anyone who’d like to talk about making a monthly pledge to the GACC or New Directions can call Bryant at 937-981-4752, Mike Anderson at 937-876-9868 or Janie Larkins at 937-981-7315. Bryant said anyone wanting to talk about making a donation to help finish the new building should contact him.