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Former School Gets New Life as Center for Hope

Michele Skalicky

A former Springfield school building will get new life as a place to help lift low-income or homeless individuals out of poverty.

Community Partnership of the Ozarks recently purchased the former Pepperdine Learning Center, 1518 E. Dale, from Springfield Public Schools.  The non-profit organization recently announced it will relocate the Springfield Affordable Housing Center to the former school, which will be called the O’Reilly Center for Hope.  The building is named for the O’Reilly Family, which is donating $1 million toward the new center.

Janet Dankert, president and CEO of the Community Partnership of the Ozarks, says the facility  will be a community-centered hub for affordable housing and homeless prevention services, education and “other resources vital to the growth of our community.”

Financial counseling will be offered there as well as Making Sense of Money financial literacy classes; in-service training on tenant rights and responsibilities; the Tools for Life program; home buyer opportunities and educational information.

CPO’s One Door program will be located at the center as well as the Springfield Community Land Trust. Partners who will provide services and resources onsite at the O’Reilly Center for Hope will include Burrell Behavioral Health, OACAC, Legal Services of Southern Missouri, Habitat for Humanity, Catholic Charities of Southern Missouri, Family Support Division, the Springfield Police Department and many more.

To make a donation or for more information about the plans for the new O’Reilly Center for Hope, call Community Partnership of the Ozarks at 417-888-2020.