SAGINAW (WJRT) -
(06/17/14) - They have actually raised more than $3 million. When prospective donors heard why the money was needed, most said yes right away.
It was a different type of groundbreaking, with pinwheels for prevention planted in pots. This is where the new facility for the Child Abuse and Neglect Council Great Lakes Bay Region will be built in Saginaw.
A major capital campaign began in February.
"We had about 130 possible dream team members that each called about 8-10 people," said Michael Stodolak, of Independent Bank.
Stodolak says $3.1 million has been raised.
"This message was so clear, it was, 'How do you help the children in your community get to tomorrow?'" he said.
Suzanne Greenberg was a victim of child abuse - now she's the CEO of the non-profit known as the CAN Council. Greenberg says while the new 12,000 facility will provide more space to handle child abuse and neglect cases, it will also help prevent those things.
"I know how it is to hide in your closet or to hide under your bed and be scared of people who are supposed to love you," she said. "We want to begin more closely and look at prevention, because if we prevent child abuse from happening, we affect generations."
Police on hand for the ceremony know the extra space will help in the investigation of possible crimes. "This will allow for the staff to get these children in to interview them in a comfortable space, make them feel as comfortable as possible after they have been through something horrendous in their lives," said Bill Federspiel, Saginaw County sheriff.
Greenberg hopes the new building will be a place parents will turn to before something horrendous happens.
"We have support for everything else, isn't this one of the toughest jobs to do? Parents need help," she said.
The building will adjoin the existing CAN Council facility. The project is expected to be completed next spring.