Shiloh center might receive aid for roof repairs

$7,000 grant would not cover cost of food pantry

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The Augusta Commission might give Shiloh Comprehensive Community Center $7,000 in federal funding to repair its leaking roof, but that falls short of what the center needs to keep its food pantry open.

Mae Green, left, and Cheryl Gilchrist share a laugh as they play a card game at Shiloh Community Center, Jan. 31  Rainier Ehrhardt/FILE
Rainier Ehrhardt/FILE
Mae Green, left, and Cheryl Gilchrist share a laugh as they play a card game at Shiloh Community Center, Jan. 31

The pantry, which has served the Augusta area since 1977, faces closing by March. It would be the first time in 30 years the community center has cut services, said Elizabeth Jones, Shiloh's executive director. Shiloh, a private nonprofit, also runs senior programs and after-school tutoring.

The commission's administrative services committee on Monday asked its staff to try to recoup money from a contractor that improperly installed Shiloh's roof in 1999.

If that fails, the committee would ask for a recommendation on whether to fix the roof using federal money. The money could be reallocated from another program, which is apparently defunct.

Despite the offer, Jones said she was disappointed. The center had asked the commission for $55,000 toward repairs and operations this year.

The city faces a $9 million budget deficit, and City Administrator Fred Russell has said the only way to help Shiloh would be to take money away from something else in the budget.

Shiloh's donor contributions have dropped 30 percent during the recession, Jones has said, and the center has used up its reserves. Shiloh cannot conduct a food drive because it participates in Golden Harvest Food Bank's brown bag service, and that program's rules prohibit such fundraising.

"We really do need the funding," Jones said. "I would not have asked if I had another way to get it."

The church across the street from Shiloh distributes food, but only for two hours on Saturday, according to Jones. Shiloh's pantry is open five days a week and people show up from all over the area to get help. It would be a tough time to lose the pantry, she said.

"After the economy got worse, it's families now that come," she said. "It's not just transient men and women. It's husbands with children."

The committee also asked staffers to continue to look for money that could go toward helping Shiloh.

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InChristLove 02/08/11 - 07:47 am
I thought I read somewhere

I thought I read somewhere that there was going to be a concert or something to help raise money for this facility.

vetbubba99 02/08/11 - 07:50 am
I was ther yesterday and they

I was ther yesterday and they have a sign that says they are a United Way agaency. Have they gone to ask them for some extra help now and if so can they help now/.

Pretty_Red1986 02/08/11 - 11:18 am
"The committee also asked

"The committee also asked staffers to continue to look for money that could go toward helping Shiloh." Who is on the commitee and who are the committee members? Why are they not stepping in. I have been there before and if you ask me the Shiloh's executive director isn't such a friendly person. She has some flaws that needs to be evaluated. The people that attend the center are wonderful and Mrs. Crawford is such a lovely person... As a individual I wouldn't mind donating due to those reasons. Maybe this article will bring them more help.

OIC 02/08/11 - 12:14 pm
How much does the executive

How much does the executive director gets paid in salary each year.

Ms Judy
Ms Judy 02/08/11 - 04:56 pm
Who was the roofing company

Who was the roofing company and is there any recourse on them?

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