WREC Supports Boys and Girls Club Expansion

By Dianna Troyer

“We’re grateful for the grants from
WREC and CoBank. We will use them to
buy kitchen equipment.”
— Club Director Danielle Runnion

What happens to unclaimed capital credits? They accumulate in an account until a worthy project comes along—one that has a lasting impact for a community in Wells Rural Electric Co.’s service area.

In the most recent case, the unclaimed credits helped the Wells Boys and Girls Club with an expansion project that more than quadruples the size of its current facility.

The club’s mission is to enable young people to reach their full potential and be productive, caring and responsible. The curriculum focuses on education and career development, science, technology, engineering, math, character and leadership development, health and life skills, sports, fitness and recreation, and fine arts.

WREC’s grant of $7,500 in unclaimed credits was matched with a $7,500 Sharing Success grant from CoBank, a cooperative bank headquartered in Denver with agribusinesses and electric cooperatives as clients. Its Sharing Success charitable giving program awards $4 million annually to nonprofits.

The club was outgrowing its 1,200-square-foot building and received a $1,433,087 grant from the William N. Pennington Foundation to build a 6,900-square-foot addition.

It will be completed this month and includes a lobby, classrooms, restrooms, gym, and a commercial kitchen. The original building will become an art room, administrative office and computer center.

“We’re grateful for the grants from WREC and CoBank. We will use them to buy kitchen equipment,” says Danielle Runnion, the club’s director. “We wondered how we would fund that.” The capital credits grant is not the only way WREC supports the club as a community partner. It also pays the salary for two teacher’s aides. Other local partners are the city, which gave the club its original building, and the school district, which provides transportation.

The new 115-foot-by-60- foot addition will enable more kids to join the club.

“We have a waiting list and are excited to enroll seventh to twelfth graders for the first time for $15 annually,”
Danielle says. “They’ll really like using the gym after school.”

The program has 50 students who attend on different days.

“Usually, I average about 28 students a day,” Danielle says. “It’s such a blessing to work with them and see them progress academically, make friends and become more physically fit.”

With the expansion, an assistant director will be hired, and the club will extend its hours by 30 minutes, staying open until 6 p.m.

The club will move into the new building sometime in January after city inspectors approve a certificate of occupancy.

“We’re looking forward to having a grand opening for the community,” Danielle says. “It’s a great way to start the new year. We’re more than ready.”

The new building will have an occupant capacity of 200 and will be available for community events. For information, call 775- 752-2949. Students are charged a $50 yearly membership fee, $50 for the school year and $50 for full-time summer. A $5 fee per member is charged on Fridays when school is out due to holidays and breaks during the four-day school week. Donations may be sent to P.O. Box 2114, Elko, Nevada, 89803 with a notation that the gift go to the Wells club.