ST. LOUIS - Independence Center, a nonprofit committed to helping those with chronic mental illness, has unveiled its new ADA ramp and Welcome Center. The $180,000 improvement project is an effort to make the nonprofit’s building more accessible to those with physical disabilities and establish a unified point of entry to allow for better coordination of care.
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“Both the new ADA ramp and the new Welcome Center will help further our mission of creating a community atmosphere which promotes those with mental illness feeling wanted, needed, and accepted,” said Trish Holmes, Executive Director of Independence Center. “These improvement projects would not have been possible without the generous support of our donors through our annual fundraising events. We are very thankful for everything they do and are looking forward to the difference it will make for the members we serve.”
The Welcome Center was formerly located on Laclede Avenue but has now been moved to Independence Center’s Clubhouse building at 4245 Forest Park Avenue. The Welcome Center will now be housed in the same facility as Independence Center’s Clubhouse, Community Support, and St. Louis Pharmacy, making it easier for those interested in touring the facility or seeking care to quickly have access to the services they need.
Holmes added that the ADA ramp was an important addition because a significant portion of the population they serve needs additional physical safety support to enter the building safely. This project is a direct result of the progress Independence Center’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) committee has made to make the center more inclusive and identify areas of need.
“The work our committee does is so important to the success of our center,” said Holmes. “We want everyone to feel welcome, regardless of if you are walking, rolling, or strolling in the building. I am so proud of the important work that we are accomplishing together to ensure we promote inclusivity of all members and staff."
Independence Center is an active, forward-thinking nonprofit organization providing those with chronic mental illness a place to belong, work and achieve healthy, happy, quality lives. Its mission is to provide all the services and resources a person with a serious and persistent mental illness needs to manage their symptoms, find belonging and purpose and gain the independence to live a healthy, quality life. For more information about Independence Center, or to learn more about their services, go to www.independencecenter.org.