Community Resource Center renovated to expand reach
Last week marked the grand reopening of the Community Resource Center at 1585 N. Rand Road, Palatine, following $850,000 in structural and architectural improvements by Northwest Community Healthcare.
Along with renovations, the event also celebrated the 20-plus year partnership between NCH and Partners for Our Communities, one of NorthShore University HealthSystem's inaugural Community Investment Fund awardees who operates the center.
NCH and NorthShore executives and volunteers were on hand to celebrate with local political representatives, POC leaders and CRC agency partners, including All Saints, Bridge, HIAS, Palatine Township Senior Center, Palatine Assisting Through Hope, Palatine Public Library, Palatine Park District, The Center for Teaching and Learning, Harper College, village of Palatine, District 15 and Women in Need Growing Stronger.
NCH CEO and President Steve Scogna welcomed the crowd and shared the history and important role of the CRC.
"More than 25 years ago, a group of community leaders, including NCH, gathered to discuss the growing migration of immigrant families to the Northwest suburbs, particularly Palatine. These families needed support in many areas such as health services, education and literacy, employment and more.
"These partnerships are even more important because they go beyond the dollars. This is about coming together as a true catalyst for change through our talents, unique capabilities and resources, with a focus on impact, outcomes, engagement and partnership," said Scogna.
It was agreed that a community center would best meet the community's needs under one roof, and NCH, with the support of a generous donor, purchased a former retail storefront, renovated it and helped the idea come to fruition.
POC was operating nearby and was invited to partner with NCH in running the day-to-day operations of the center. Their bilingual, bicultural staff members greet everyone who enters and connect them with the on-site services provided by 15 agency partners.
Today, CRC sees more than 200,000 visitors annually, and NCH and POC are continuously working together to identify and address the changing needs of the community.
NCH board Chairwoman Mary Sheahen said, "NCH is committed not only to our patients, but to everyone who lives and works in the community, and this center is just one of the many outreach efforts we provide that help our most vulnerable community members."
As part of their recent merger, both NorthShore, including NCH and Edward-Elmhurst Health, each committed $100 million to funds that will generate millions of dollars annually to benefit our communities through programs that enhance health and well-being, advance health equity and support local economic growth.
More than $116,000 from the fund awarded to POC will help increase access to the many resources available at the center through the hiring of intake coordinators and a case manager, providing a presence during all hours of operation.
These new team members meet with clients and conduct full evaluations to identify specific needs and connect them with resources and case management services for clients presenting more complex issues.
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