The Family and Community Engagement Center run by Commerce ISD completed its first full school year of operation, and big plans are in store for its future.
Opened in October of 2017, the FACE Center has since grown and become a more visible part of the community. Under the direction of district employees Kathy Myers and Alison Walker, the center has been adding programming and getting the word out about what services they offer. At the time of its opening, Walker described the center as a “safe place to enrich our district families” by providing support groups, educational programming and community services.
Since that time, huge changes have been made to the center. In January, the CISD Board of Trustees voted to install a school-based health clinic for students administered by Carevide. Since then, renovation has been ongoing at the center to provide adequate facilities. Walker said this week that that the renovation is going well and is nearing completion.
“The clinic is basically complete,” Walker said. “Most of what is needed now is for Carevide to move all of their equipment in.”
Walker added that the clinic would be open two days out of the week, with the days yet to be chosen. She also added that the clinic would “definitely” be open by the start of the school year in August, but that they hope to have it open even earlier to provide immunizations and physicals for the upcoming year.
In addition to the Carevide clinic. The center also received upgrades to its facilities that help promote health and hygiene among students and their families.
During the spring, Leadership Hunt County, a group organized by the Greenville Chamber of Commerce, initiated a fundraiser to benefit the FACE Center. Through donations, they were able to raise $39,210 to give to the center for the addition of hookups for washers and dryers as well as showering facilities.
Walker said that those projects are also nearing completion. Also along with those upgrades, Walker said the center is adding laptops for use by families at the center, citing the ability to get internet access for job applications, benefit enrollments and more.
She added that the center is also looking into new programming to add, such as first-aid training for parents. Walker says that the response from the community in the past year has been tremendous.
“One of the things that took us by surprise was the amount of feedback and response from the community,” Walker said. “I hope the center can continue to build relationships and let families know that the school is in their corner.”
The FACE Center is located behind the Commerce Middle School campus on the north side at 606 Culver Street.