GCRC celebrates grand opening of Willcox operation

The GCRC resale shop in Willcox celebrated its grand opening Saturday. - David Bell Photo/Gila Valley Central

WILLCOX — GCRC recently changed its name thanks to an expansion of services into Willcox, and the organization that serves those with special needs celebrated its Willcox operation with a ribbon-cutting and party Saturday.

Great Communities Resource Center started helping northern Cochise County residents last July and purchased the old DES building in Willcox in November. It opened to clients in February, with classrooms and a thrift store where the clients get job skills training.

“The response of the community has just been phenomenal,” said Lane Hegel, GCRC executive director. “They’re bringing donations to the thrift store, they’re shopping the thrift store, the families that needed services that weren’t able to get services before because of the programs that were here have come out and joined our program. We’re around 15 to 20 people participating in our program now so, yeah, we’re doing great.”

GCRC offers services to adults and children with special needs. For adults, GCRC provides communication, daily living, socialization, self-regulation, and pre-vocational training, as well as teaching individuals to respect others and develop independent living skills. GCRC also offers respite services to family care-givers.

GCRC celebrated its Willcox grand opening Saturday with free hot dogs, snow-cones, popcorn and spins on the prize wheel. – David Bell Photo/Gila Valley Central

In addition to northern Cochise, GCRC serves Graham and Greenlee counties, and operates a thrift store located on Safford’s Main Street, where job training and employment is offered to its clients.

Both thrift stores accept donations from the public and sells the items, with sales revenue used to help fund the child and adult training programs.

Editor’s note: Reporter David Bell serves on the GCRC board of directors.