Bend's Community Center on the fiscal rebound

Third-party audit, leadership training under way

Bend's Community Center on the fiscal rebound

BEND, Ore. - There's a possible light at the end of the tunnel for Bend's Community Center after money troubles that nearly forced them to close their doors for good in late summer.

"Three months ago, or even two months ago, we didn't know what was going to happen with Bend's Community Center," Executive Director Linda Heatley said Monday.

Hard work is shining a more positive light on the organization, and hopes of recovery are getting brighter.

Heatley says the organization's books are being reviewed by an outside auditor, and a non-profit management expert will be coming to bend to help train leadership in early December.

"I worked here up until two years ago," said Heatley. "When they asked me to come back, I was just, 'If there is anything I can do to help keep these doors open, I will.'"

Core programs like Sunday's 'Feed the Hungry' and senior meals will continue, while others like the thrift store and Bike Shed are put on hold.

With the organization back on track, the annual Thanksgiving turkey dinner, slated for Sunday, Nov. 18, is a go. But the center needs the community's help to make it possible.

"We were getting in kind of a panic mode. because usually by this time of year, we are getting in turkeys, but by this last weekend we had none," said Heatley.

With money and other donations slowly trickling in, Bend's Community Center has been able to buy a few items and plans to do the best they can with what they're given.

As the organization pulls itself from a dark time, they are thankful for the community they've been able to help in the past.

"It's been really good. It's one of the reasons we've decided we can go forward is because of the community stepping forward and helping with donations and volunteering," said Heatley.

The BCC is expecting to feed around 300 people on Nov. 18; also, the Family Kitchen will serve Thanksgiving Day dinner on Thursday, Nov. 22 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at 231 NW Idaho Avenue.

For more information on Bend's Community Center and how you can help, click here.

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