Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Bright Tomorrows Barn Raising Celebration

As many of you have noticed over the last several weeks I have documented the tearing down of a city landmark (I suppose if you are George Hansen you think the old City of Alameda office was a landmark) and the quick progress in building a child advocacy center known as Bright Tomorrows. My interest in this stems not only for the close proximity it is to where I live, but the amazing community effort going into the project.

Bill Isley of Tuscany Builders, a local contractor here in Pocatello has donated labor and as far as I can tell the materials to build this new facility and Rod Saunderson owner of Saunderson Electric had donated his time and resources in terms of the electrical. I also believe the plans for the project were donated by a local architect. There have been crews from all over town in my backyard in the last several weeks including many workers from the City of Pocatello. It is simply amazing how quickly this project has come together.

And now the "real" work begins. Starting tomorrow the project will enter the "barn raising" stage which includes framing the entire building in 72 hours. From May 2nd through the 4th we will see the building come together and the community really pitch in.

On May 3rd from 3-6pm there will be a Barn Raising Celebration for those involved in the project and the immediate neighbors. Mayor Chase will be on hand to speak and the main movers & shakers in this project (namely Isley) will be able to talk about the project and how it all came together.

The amazing thing about Bright Tomorrows coming into this neighborhood (their pamphlet says they are a central location where specially trained professionals work together with the common goal of supporting families during the investigation of suspected child abuse) isn't that it all happened so quickly, but how much the community's attitude has changed in regard to facilities like this. When the facility I work in was first proposed the neighbors weren't particularly pleased with the idea of having an entire facility dedicated to the care of the developmentally disabled (and some mentally ill), but now you would never know that. The neighbor directly across the street picks up a few of the residents for church every Sunday and the neighbors seem very welcoming now. And this isn't the only facility in the neighborhood. Behind us is the Pocatello Free Clinic, down the street is an assisted living facility for the elderly, and near by is what I think is a certified family home for the disabled. It just amazes me at how welcoming the community has been to these facilities and the incoming Bright Tomorrows facility.

It should be a noisy couple of days around here, but I am looking forward to seeing the building up and the organization move in. If you happen to be in Pocatello, drive on by the corner of Washington and Walnut in the next couple of days to see the project.

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