Updated: Apr 21
Vice President of Foundation & Organizational Advancement Gary Rouleau was joined by campus youth for an interview with Buffalo Bills player Harrison Phillips. This interview, along with the $10,000 award, were provided by the generosity of the Ed Block Courage Award Foundation .
With the help from this award, Gateway-Longview plans to rehabilitate an old building from the Main Street Campus into the organization's new Therapeutic Recreation Lodge. The mission for this project is twofold: to explore, educate, develop and facilitate a youth's attitude, philosophy, life skills, knowledge, self-esteem and sense of accomplishment through the hands-on work of rehabbing the cabin building; and to have the ability to utilize the completed space to practice healthy leisure and recreation activities for both the youth and their families.
The “cabin” building at one time was utilized by the Agency for various programming but over the years has fallen into disrepair. As part of this project, campus youth will be given the opportunity to learn and work alongside the maintenance team, receiving hands-on experiences that can be applied to their own life skills and possible future employment.
Skills such as:
· Installation of a new metal roof and new windows
· Repairing sections of hardwood flooring
· Installation of shelves, cabinets and countertops
· Installation of a generator and other electrical work
· Clearing the existing overgrown landscaping and laying down new mulch, plants and arborvitaes
When completed, the rehabbed space will become an area for recreational programming and activities that are focused on a holistic approach. Specifically we are looking to provide individual and small groups activity space and a therapeutic visitation area for youth and their families. The goal is to utilize the space for art therapy, nature trails, yoga, mindfulness and spiritual life sessions while connecting with nature in a calming, peaceful and safe space.
Click the video below to hear more about our plans for the award money, how to describe the color "red" to a blind person, and what it's like playing for the Buffalo Bills.