Amidst family, friends, colleagues, and supporters, Ann Mantini-Celima, executive director of Wellspring Niagara, proudly took centre stage Wednesday Sept. 13/2017 at the groundbreaking ceremony on 50 Wellspring Way: future site of Niagara’s only cancer support centre.
“Today is a beautiful day in more ways than one,” she said. “I can’t think of a better location than to be standing on Wellspring Way and celebrate this remarkable milestone for Wellspring Niagara.”
The groundbreaking has been in the works since 2014, when Pelham Town Council signed a memorandum of understanding with Wellspring Niagara. As agreed upon in the MOU, the Town would lease the land in East Fonthill to Wellspring Niagara for a renewable term of 20 years at an annual rent of one dollar.
The parties agreed that the actual fair value of the lands ($1,040,119.81) leased to Wellspring Niagara would be a donation by the Town to the building campaign
“This prime 1.8 acre site at 50 Wellspring Way was donated by the Town of Pelham,” said Mantini-Celima. “We are extremely grateful to the Town of Pelham for their generous gift and there are no words to express our appreciation – East Fonthill is exactly the gateway location to build our new facility that will better serve our members and residents all across the Niagara Region.”
Currently, Wellspring operates in a 2,000 square foot facility in Thorold. The new centre will be 11,000 square feet, offering much-needed space and resources for the services and programming that, in 2016, nearly 7,000 program attendances required.
“Wellspring embodies the spirit of generosity and sacrifice at a time, ac critical time, in people’s life,” said Mayor Dave Augustyn. “Wellspring is a beacon of light, of hope, for those dealing with cancer; you do amazing things and you’ve done amazing things.”
Joe Matthews, co-chair of the board of directors of Wellspring Niagara, and chair of the Help Us Build Hope fundraising campaign, announced that half of their $5 million dollar goal has been achieved.
The announcements didn’t stop there.
Betty-Lou Souter, on behalf of Wise Guys Charities, announced a $100,000 gift, and Adrian Barnet, president of the board of directors for the Ontario Paper Thorold Foundation, announced a $250,000 gift on behalf of the foundation.
The new facility is set to open at the end of next year.
To find out more about Wellspring Niagara, visit their website: www.wellspring.ca/niagara
Source – Town of Pelham press release