Thursday, November 17, 2005
The holiday season came early for LIFT-UP of Routt County.
The nonprofit organization was awarded two $100,000 capital grants this week, bringing the total raised for construction of a new facility past the $1.1 million mark.
"It's a huge relief," Executive Director David Freseman said. "In the last 60 days, we've raised $320,000 from capital grants, which is pretty unusual."
LIFT-UP needs $1.27 million to cover the project's cost.
Two Denver groups, the Adolph Coors Foundation and The Daniels Fund, each gave $100,000 to LIFT-UP this week.
Freseman said he spoke with Christina Coors about the contribution from her family's foundation and to representatives of The Daniels Fund at a meeting in the Front Range.
"They said, 'We got your grant proposal, and we love what you guys do,'" Freseman said. "The organization is amazed and delighted by the response from these foundations."
Bill Daniels, who is in the cable TV business, established The Daniels Fund in 1997 to help people in need.
Freseman said Lynne Drogasz assisted LIFT-UP with writing the grant applications.
LIFT-UP already had received a Com----munity Development Block Grant through the state, a $120,000 challenge grant from the Gates Family Foundation and generous support locally.
Routt County donated $25,000 from its 2006 budget and waived all county-related building fees and permits.
The city of Steamboat Springs donated $40,000 from its 2006 funds, which included payment of city-related building fees and permits.
"The community and even beyond to the Front Range sees the important need LIFT-UP fills in this community," Freseman said.
LIFT-UP operates from three high-rent facilities. A new facility would consolidate its programs under a larger roof and enable employees to work more efficiently, Freseman said.
The money saved will go toward new programs, he added.
Lift-Up's three programs are an emergency assistance and food bank program, the client mentoring and referral program and the community thrift store program.
The emergency assistance and food bank program provides food and assists people in paying rent, as well as heat, medical and dental bills. The client mentoring and referral program helps people become more self-sufficient and self-reliant. The thrift store provides vouchers for household goods and clothes at a low cost.
Lift-Up still needs to raise $138,000 to receive the full challenge grants offered and complete the building with no mortgage.
Freseman said he was waiting to hear from the Boettcher Foundation about a grant request, but he hoped Lift-Up could complete its fundraising early next year.
Construction of the new facility is scheduled to begin in the spring at 2125 Curve Court.