Our View: Welcome home, to the LOVE Building
The recent reopening of the LOVE Building at Condon Park in Grass Valley is a solid model of what’s possible through collaboration focused on the mission.
Gold Country Community Services, which provides indispensable services such as our community’s “Meals on Wheels” program, has needed a permanent home base since moving from the Nevada County Fairgrounds nearly a decade ago. The LOVE Building — its acronym stands for Local Organized Volunteer Effort — was an option, but was in need of a great deal of love itself.
The building was constructed in 1982 by the Grass Valley Host Lions Club, a long-standing local nonprofit organization that also knows a thing or two about community service. In addition to constructing the LOVE Building — and eventually transferring ownership to the city of Grass Valley — the Lions have led Flag Day commemorations at schools, sponsored a Student Speaker Contest, donated trees to the fairgrounds, hosted foreign students in its Lions Youth Exchange, funded a Pet Food Pantry and hosted a reading challenge at Union Hill School — all among its club projects in 2016 alone. And that’s in addition to the Lions Club International ongoing commitment to support sight impaired people all across the globe.
In taking on responsibility for the LOVE Building in 2013, Gold Country Community Services had its permanent location, but the structure needed improvements for ADA accessibility, energy efficiencies, a commercial kitchen, additional parking and more space — from the former 2,400 to the current 3,360 square feet — to fit the need. All of that work came at cost largely funded by $400,000 from a Community Development Block Grant won by the City of Grass Valley.
“I’m so glad to see this finally come about,” Gold Country Community Services Director Sandy Jacobson told The Union. “We are very grateful for the city, who was our partner, who managed the project from start to finish; we have only participated in terms of design.”
Many of Grass Valley’s city officials were on hand for the ribbon-cutting ceremony on Aug. 23, celebrating a “new and improved” LOVE Building, where Gold Country Community Services will oversee its community service efforts, which annually includes donating 46,000 meals to seniors and preschool children, along with delivering 175 cords of firewood to heat low-income homes. The organization, founded 1976 as the Senior Citizens Foundation of Nevada County, will also manage the rental of the LOVE Building by local organizations and community members, as well as host its own events and classes, focused on fun and fitness.
Thanks to all involved, no longer will Gold Country’s staff and volunteers need to do their good work in “nomadic” fashion.
And the end result of the remodel not only will help provide much-needed food, firewood, fun and fitness, but also will serve as a shining example of what can be accomplished through collaborative efforts among organizations committed to making service to our community the top priority.
Welcome home to the, new and improved, LOVE Building.
The weekly Our View column represents the opinions of The Union Editorial Board, a group of editors and writers from The Union, as well as informed community members. Contact the board at EditBoard@TheUnion.com.
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