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Anti-poverty agency shows location of new headquarters

Date: 11/4/2008

By G. Michael Dobbs

Managing Editor

SPRINGFIELD Springfield Partners for Community Action (SPCA), the city's official anti-poverty agency, gave a sneak peek at what will be its new headquarters at 721 State St. last week during its annual meeting.

The agency has rented the first floor of the building for its New Beginnings Childcare Center for years, and Executive Director Paul Bailey told Reminder Publications the agency intends to finish renovations to the second floor so the staff and offices at their current location can move in next spring.

The agency bought the building over two years ago. The annual meeting was conducted in a space serving as a meeting room that was recently cleaned, painted and carpeted.

Bailey explained the plan is to consolidate the offices on the second floor without moving the Open Pantry emergency food program, which is also located there. Eventually he would like those offices to move to the first floor along with the daycare program and create a business incubator on the second floor.

Bailey said the cost of completing the renovations is between $200,000 and $300,000, which include a renovation to the building's elevator. He said the agency has already spent $140,000 on roof repairs.

He said he has contacted private, state and federal funding sources for budget assistance and is now "waiting for answers."

About 70 people attended the event, which included the awarding of $750 scholarships by the agency. Myosha Boynton, Edgar Martinez, Talasha Carrington-Lewis, Khyree Pleasant, Emely Rosario, Madeline Medina, Chak Ming Chu, Donna Williams and Yesenia Mendez were this year's recipients.

Three out-going board members were also honored for their service at the meeting: Minnie Galloway, Stella Hylton and Maria Perez.