As the Powell Senior Center works to secure funding for a new building, it’s received a broad base of support from the Powell community and beyond. That’s a good thing, because the cost …
As the Powell Senior Center works to secure funding for a new building, it’s received a broad base of support from the Powell community and beyond. That’s a good thing, because the cost of providing services to the area’s senior citizens continues to rise.
When all of the overhead is accounted for, it currently costs the center around $10 for each meal it serves, said board member Jim Wysocki.
“Right now we’re going through an inflationary time, and everything ain’t going down, I can tell you that,” Wysocki said.
The center currently requests a contribution of $3.50 per meal, but that’s only a suggestion; Director Linda Dalton said the center receives an average of about $2.58 per meal from seniors, with the nonprofit organization absorbing the remaining costs for clients who may not be able to afford the bill.
The board recently considered hiking the price per meal by 50 cents, up to $4, but ultimately decided to hold off. Even though the charge is optional, Wysocki said the board was concerned the hike would drive away residents who couldn’t afford the increase but who would be too proud to not pay in full.
Dalton said rising prices have required the center to seek out more grant funding, drawing from 15 different grant sources so far this year.
Meanwhile, many governments, organizations, businesses and individuals have pledged to support or have already supported the nonprofit’s efforts to build a new and improved senior center near Rocky Mountain Manor.
As one example, Blair’s Market recently donated $1,712 toward the project, which represented a percentage of proceeds from certain items sold at the store. It’s a recurring promotion, said Blair’s Manager Jason Foulger, with past donations going to Powell Valley Loaves and Fishes. This time around, “We saw that the senior center had a great need,” Foulger said, adding, “We want to take care of them.”
The grocer isn’t alone. Contributors include the Park County Commission ($1 million, announced last week), the Daniels Fund ($400,000) and the Wyoming Department of Transportation ($312,872). Then there’s nearly $75,700 worth of contributions and pledges from the general public plus support from a half-dozen other nonprofits.
For instance, the Powell Eagles has been hosting a series of ongoing fundraisers, delivering several hundred dollars last week and another contribution on Monday.
“It’s coming in,” Dalton said, “slowly, but every drop helps.”
Some of the contributions are contingent on the Powell Senior Center raising the full amount for its new 8,725 square foot building; as of last week, the center had about $3.89 million left to raise toward a $6.32 million goal.
Leaders of the organization hope the State Loan and Investment Board will finish off the campaign by awarding a grant for the remaining funding on April 7.
In addition to needing financial support, Dalton said more volunteers are needed to deliver meals to seniors’ homes, as the current crew is getting stretched thin by increasing demand and expanding routes.
Anyone interested in donating to the new building, supporting the center’s ongoing services or serving as a volunteer is asked to call 307-754-4223.