New River Community Action dedicates new building
RADFORD – Since 1965, New River Community Action has been helping residents of the New River Valley receive a “Hand Up, Not a Hand Out.”
Now, NRCA will continue “handing up” from its new location on 1093 E. Main St. in Radford.
New River Community Action held an open house and dedication ceremony May 17 at their new office location.
According to the NRCA’s website, President Lyndon B. Johnson’s Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 established Community Action Agencies across the United States. These agencies were set up to develop programs that addressed issues like employment, health, housing, emergency assistance and other areas related to poverty.
In April 1965, a charter was signed to establish the Montgomery-Floyd Community Action. Three years later, the organization changed to Montgomery-Floyd-Radford-Craig Community Action. In 1969, after adding Giles and Pulaski counties, the organization changed its name to NRCA.
Today, NRCA serves the city of Radford along with Giles, Pulaski, Floyd and Montgomery counties.
Radford Mayor Bruce Brown presented NRCA with a proclamation from the city and thanked the group of about 50 for their part in making Radford and the New River Valley a better place to live.
“As the host city for the administrative offices, it’s very important for us to be here and say thanks,” Brown said. “This is an organization that’s been around this area since  and they make a huge difference.”
Brown believes NRCA will be a good fit in downtown Radford. Moving from one end of the city to the other will help the organization with visibility, Brown added.
“I think it complements the different and diverse businesses down here,” Brown said.
Sheila Tucker, director of NRCA’s Head Start program, agreed the new location helps NRCA in a variety of ways.
“We like the new location because it provides more visibility in terms of people being able to relate because we knew it would be a high traffic area,” Tucker said. “We also wanted a place that was going to be efficient and cost effective.”
Dels. Joseph Yost, R-Blacksburg and Nick Rush, R-Christiansburg, also attended the dedication ceremonies.
Yost said he’s worked closely with the NRCA in the past and believes the new location is a huge benefit to everyone.
“It provides a central location to drive to,” Yost said. “I think it’s really no more than 40 minutes for everybody [in the New River Valley] and in a rural area, that’s not bad.”
Rush, who once served on the Montgomery County Board of Supervisors, said he was lucky enough to be appointed to the NRCA Board during that time.
“I know what a great job they do for underserved folks in our communities, and they help provide a safety net in child development and a lot of things that are really needed,” Rush said.
Alaina Gelbert, NRCA board of directors member, said the new location not only helps make the organization more visible in the community, but provides a little “boost” for NRCA staff, too.
“It feels great to be in such a beautifully renovated yet historically accurate building, right in the heart of Radford, which has been a great partner for NRCA,” Gelbert said. “I personally feel, also, that it has been a morale booster for the people who work so hard for NRCA and its mission and goals.”
New River Community Action is a vital part of the New River Valley, Gelbert said.
“So many people in this area are just struggling with the day to day, and NRCA’s services can help them move beyond that,” Gelbert said.
“We believe our services are a hand up, not a hand out, and everyone in the community benefits, either directly or indirectly.”
By Mike Shaw
No Comments »
No comments yet.