Community Foundation Awards $75,000 Grant to REIN Coalition

The Wabash Valley Community Foundation, through its Clay County affiliate, recently awarded a $75,000 grant to the REIN Coalition to assist with the construction of the Wilma and Liston Buell Community Center.

The REIN Coalition formed in 2009 in an effort to create a new and unique community center for the benefit of Clay County. Comprised of eight Clay City residents, members selected the name REIN to reflect the planned purposed of the community center: recreation, education, information and nutrition. These four ideologies are what the REIN Coalition hopes to provide not only to residents of Clay City, but to those residing in all ten townships of Clay County.

“The [Coalition] identified the need for a community and senior center building capable or housing meetings and events of various community organizations,” explained Jeremy Booe, Vice President of the REIN Coalition. “We’ve been working on [creating this space] for quite some time and want to have a building where we can do any and every type of event. This building will not only house a larger food pantry, but will also benefit the YMCA, 4-H clubs, Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, and be available for graduation parties, birthday parties, wedding receptions and much more.”

Booe said that while the idea of a large community center has been in the works for over ten years, the project received a boost thanks to an anonymous donor stepping forward to contribute up to $1 million in a challenge gift to the community. Under the terms of the challenge, every gift made from January 1, 2020 through November 30, 2021 would be matched $2-for-$1 up to $1 million.

Acknowledging the Community Center is a fantastic opportunity for community members to invest in the Clay County community, as well as the significant potential impact of such a facility, the Community Foundation awarded the REIN Coalition with a $75,000 grant toward the Wilma and Liston Buell Community Center. This grant will be matched $2-for-$1, resulting in a $225,000 gift for Clay County residents.

“The Community Foundation has focused on using a portion of its grant dollars for larger projects in Clay County,” said Brian Deakins, Wabash Valley Community Foundation board member and president of its Clay County affiliate. “We have identified the Wilma and Liston Buell Community Center as a significant project that will benefit Clay County residents and are pleased to provide this $75,000 grant to the REIN Coalition.”

The facility will be located in the southwest corner of Clay City’s Goshorn Park where the original tennis courts are. Groundbreaking for the facility is currently set for noon on July 14, 2021.