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Community celebrates at the opening of the Health Departmentís new Community Center

Fri October 16, 2015

The DuPage County community celebrated on Thursday, Oct. 15, at the Grand Opening of the DuPage County Health Department's brand new Community Center in Wheaton. The theme for the event was "Celebrate Community" and, in addition to an official ribbon cutting, there were building tours and remarks from county leaders.

Participating in the Grand Opening were members of the DuPage County Board of Health, Board of Health President Linda Kurzawa, DuPage County Board Chairman Dan Cronin, Health Department Executive Director Karen Ayala, 18th Judicial Circuit Court Judge Robert Anderson, Executive Director Angela Adkins from the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) DuPage County, NAMI Board President Corky Corley and members of the NAMI Board of Directors.
The 33,000-square-foot Community Center is located on the DuPage County Government campus in Wheaton. The cost was approximately $11 million and it was fully funded by the Health Department. NAMI has moved its headquarters to the new building and is now offering its services from this new location.
"This is an historic day for the Health Department and NAMI," said Linda Kurzawa, President of the Board of Health. "We are celebrating a new building, but much more. The Community Center offers training opportunities that are so important to Health Department and NAMI clients. This building will help more of our clients gain recovery and wellness."

Chairman Cronin lauded the Health Department for partnering with a private sector agency, NAMI DuPage, "as a model program of consolidation and partnering between the public and private sectors to efficiently provide services that are cost-effective to DuPage County residents."

Karen Ayala, Health Department Executive Director, added: "In addition to vocational training, our Community Center offers support, socialization and recreation, to all Health Department and NAMI clients."

Ayala noted that the Health Department's 24-hour crisis services have been transitioned to the Community Center, along with vocational training and psychological rehabilitation programs. "We want to assist all residents to achieve optimal health status-across all aspects of health," she added.

Angela Adkins, NAMI DuPage Executive Director, said, "Co-locating the services of the Health Department and NAMI in one building greatly expands our capacity to serve a broader range of clients. We are so excited that we are together and offering more to the community."

Wight & Company provided construction management services, as well as architectural design and engineering services for the Community Center. 

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