Boys and Girls Club of Lawrence County receive ROI and NBA Legacy Grant to fund Launching Center
The Boys and Girls Club of Lawrence County recently received two large grants totaling over $200,000 to support the renovation of a gymnasium into the Launching Center of Lawrence County.
The Regional Opportunities Initiative (ROI) awarded the Boys and Club of Lawrence County a Ready Communities implementation grant to renovate the teen building and create the Launching Center, a multi-use STEM space featuring robotics, a makerspace, and tech shop for elementary school children and teens in after-school programming. The ROI Ready Communities grant press release can be viewed here.
Building on this success, the Frank Decker, the Chief Executive Officer of the Boys and Girls Club of Lawrence County, decided to apply for the NBA Legacy Grant to take the project to the next level. The NBA All-Star 2021 Committee announced the grant recipients on 2/27 at a press release before the Pacers' game. The press release can be viewed here.
"When we designed the Launching Center, we designed it in partnership with Frank Decker and his team. Frank's vision was to take a space that was no longer being used and turn it into the hub of the community. Makerspaces bring communities together," said Mary Rinehart, CEO and President of 1st Maker Space. "Sometimes you have to apply for multiple grants in order to make a vision come to life. It took time and creative energy, but that is the work that we do at 1st Maker Space. That is what sets us apart."
The Launching Center will introduce students to regionally relevant in-demand skills and jobs through project-based learning, soft-skills training, career awareness, and pathway activities.
The preliminary designs for the Launching Center can viewed in the design gallery on the 1st Maker Space website.