By Gila Valley Leadership Class XIV
Safford, AZ—“Each year, the current Gila Valley Leadership class undertakes a project to benefit our local communities and to give class members the opportunity to develop their leadership skills. As each class is comprised of different community members, each year’s class project is reflective of their interests and talents” (Gila Valley Leadership Handbook).
Class XIV has elected to raise money and/or collect donated items to begin furnishing a non-profit-based housing facility. This facility will be used as a ‘home’ for potential service groups arriving in the Gila Valley to serve our community. This facility has been completely remodeled to provide adequate shelter for up to 12 volunteers at a time. However, the facility is essentially barren. Groups such as the National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC) come prepared to camp for 3-6 months in the great outdoors. Because these types of accommodations are generally unheard of, this newly-minted bunkhouse will place Graham County on the map. Given the extreme heat during summer months and frosty winter days, the desert often-times is a difficult place to regulate one’s ability to sleep, shower, and cook when living remotely.
The Cactus Bunkhouse has been gifted to Our Neighbor’s Food and Pantry, a local non-profit organization. The pantry partnered with three other non-profits to form the Gila Valley Collaborative, and were thus able to apply for donations and grants to remodel the building. They were then able to seek out the generous assistance of NCCC. These hardworking individuals came from all parts of the globe and provide service to non-profit organizations in our community over a three-month period – an in-kind value of $125,000.
GVL Class XIV has set a goal to raise $3,500 in order to purchase furnishings for this home-away-from-home. This will include bunk beds, mattresses, couches, chairs, tables, etc… and we certainly won’t be able to reach our goal without support from local businesses, family, friends, and community! We ask you to consider providing physical items for the bunkhouse, or a financial donation, so we may reach our target! You will be positively affected by the good we are able to accomplish for those who serve us.
Here’s how you can help:
Monetary donations: Bring a check, money order, credit/debit card, or cash to Amanda at the Chamber of Commerce, 1111 W. Thatcher Blvd., Safford, AZ or by telephone at 928-428-2511. (If paying by check, please make payable to Graham County Chamber of Commerce.)
Make a donation on GoFundMe: https://www.gofundme.com/cactus-bunkhouse-furnishings
Make a physical donation: Pledge an item to any member of Class XIV.
Purchase a raffle ticket: A 50/50 raffle is another way the class is raising funds. 50% of the funds raised through the raffle will be given to the winner. The other 50% will be used to purchase furnishings for the housing facility. Raffle tickets are available for $1.00 per ticket or $5 for 7 tickets. Raffle tickets will be sold until 2/14/2019. The drawing will be held 2/15/2019. Tickets can be purchased from any of the following people:
Amanda Jones: Graham County Chamber of Commerce
Bobbie Reed: AZ@Work—Safford
Chalene Preston: EAC Admissions
Clara Gauna: Gila Watershed Partnership
Corina Pino-Reyes: Valley Telecom
Henry Garcia: ONEAZ Credit Union
Janell Hackett: EAC Small Business Development Center
Kerri Hopson: Mount Graham Regional Medical Center
Van Taylor: City of Safford Utilities
Morgan Seale: City of Safford Utilities
Bob Wells: Bureau of Land Management—Safford
Sherrill Teeter: Town of Pima
Steve Plath: Gila Watershed Partnership
Susan Anderson: City of Safford Community Development
Sylvia Lopez: GV Boys & Girls Club
Tawny DeSpain: Mount Graham Regional Medical Center
Tyson Richins: Edward Jones
Victoria Silva: Graham County/City of Safford Library
Zackary Kelley: Bureau of Land Management —Safford