On January 9, 2009 the Interactive Resource Center opened its doors in a set of converted Sunday school rooms at Bessemer United Methodist Church. Together we rigged up a shower stall, put in washer/dryer connections, we scrubbed and we painted.
In 2008 Councilwoman Dianne Bellamy-Small had created a task force to plan a day center for people experiencing homelessness. As the economy deteriorated and the weather grew cold, we needed to do something immediately, even if only on a temporary basis, to help people through that hard winter. That something was the IRC.
The plan was for the IRC to only be open during those hard winter months, but in March of 2009 something amazing happened: the Richard Strasser family, longtime Greensboro philanthropists, gave the IRC a 22,000 square foot building (the former headquarters of their business Southern Plate & Window Glass) on the eastern edge of downtown. Given through the Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro, the building had housed the company’s offices and warehouse. “This is the perfect fit,” said Aaron Strasser.
Now, four years after that visionary gift, the Strasser family has made another offer: a community challenge to contribute to the IRC’s operating fund. All gifts made to the IRC during the months of February and March will be matched by the Strassers dollar for dollar up to $15,000.
The IRC is humbled by the giving of the Strassers and the Greensboro community. Our mission is supported through the many volunteers, partnerships, and the generosity of our neighbors.
Since we opened in 2009 we have helped over 6,000 people get back on their feet. Please join the Strassers and the IRC in continuing to offer help and hope to those who need it.
Here is a video from when we were preparing to move into our new building… how far we have come!