Princeton Rescue Squad

New contribution to the PRS shelter and education center puts funds over the top

PRINCETON — After learning that a rescue squad’s matching fund drive didn’t quite reach its goal, an anonymous donor’s new contribution put it over the top and closer to creating a new emergency shelter and education center for the Princeton area.

The Princeton Rescue Squad started a new fundraising campaign in mid-December 2018 after an anonymous donor offered to match contributions up to $50,000, CEO Stacey Hicks said. Funds raised by the effort were going toward constructing the squad’s new Emergency Center and Education Center.

Hicks said the fund drive’s original deadline was Dec. 24, 2018, but this was later extended to Jan. 1, 2019. When this deadline was reached, local donors had contributed $39,114.83. The matching grant raised the total amount to $78,229.66.

A new donor, who wished to be anonymous, too, came forward after reading in the Princeton Times that the $50,000 goal had not been met, Hicks said Tuesday. The anonymous donor agreed to match what this new contributor provided.

“On the matching grant, we had somebody come forward and got us to the $50,000, so it ended up being $100,000,” he stated. “They read in the paper where we fell a little short and they wanted to get us to $100,000, so it ended up being a $100,000 gift that we weren’t expecting.”

The squad’s current education center, which also serves as an emergency shelter, is near the squad’s headquarters off Stafford Drive. It has only 1,500 square feet of space. When it’s completed, the new emergency shelter and education center will have 6,000 square feet for testing, continuing education classes and social functions, Hicks said. The new facility will also offer space for people needing shelter during emergencies, and it will feature a commercial-grade kitchen and an emergency generator. When completed, it could shelter 100 to 150 people.

Fund raising for the project is continuing, Hicks said.

“We’re at about $1.7 million now, and we need to raise about another $1.3 million,” he stated. “We’re over halfway there now, and we’re continuing work on the building during the winter. We have a crew inside doing the metal studding on the walls, so we’re continuing on the work despite the weather.”

Checks can be made out to the Princeton Rescue Squad Building Fund and mailed to 701 Stafford Drive, Princeton, WV 24740.

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