Kroc Centers: unprecedented challenge and opportunity
by Donald Bell, Lt. Colonel –
The gift of Joan Kroc represents an unprecedented challenge and opportunity for The Salvation Army. Joan Kroc’s clear vision for the community centers to be developed with her funds was that each “Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center” provide opportunities for underserved young people, families and individuals to develop their potential through vigorous and rich participation in education, recreation, the arts, and other activities.
In accepting the gift, The Salvation Army recognized the compatibility of Joan Kroc’s vision with the mission of The Salvation Army. Her gift will be used to develop and operate projects that advance both the vision of Joan Kroc and the mission of The Salvation Army.
I would like to once again salute the ad hoc committee that gave of their time to develop the definition of a Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center as well as define goals and objectives for the development of these centers in the USA Western Territory. The divisions now have information to start making plans for the development of additional centers in the USA Western Territory.
The following information will give a general introduction to the process that has been approved in the Western Territory. Jerry Hill, consultant to the group, and Major Carol Seiler helped greatly in the development of this information. Lt. Col. Don McDougald, assistant to the chief secretary, will provide general oversight and serve as liaison at territorial headquarters relative to Joan Kroc matters.
The Definition: A Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center should consist of facilities and programs of superb quality that provide children, youth, families and individuals with character and confidence building educational, recreational, arts and other activities; and it should be a beacon of hope and an agent of change in an underserved community.
While Joan Kroc’s vision was clear, it was never limited. The Salvation Army anticipates that The Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Centers built around the Western Territory will be as diverse in appearance and approach as the communities they serve. Each center will include the facility and program components most directly responsive to the needs and desires of the community in which it is located.
The Goals: THQ will award Joan Kroc funds through a competitive process to those projects that will best advance four goals established by the Western Territory for the development and operation of the centers. These goals are
1) To advance the mission of The Salvation Army;
2) To implement the vision of Joan Kroc;
3) To use Joan Kroc’s funds and other resources to develop Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Centers expeditiously and in a fiscally responsible manner;
4) To use Joan Kroc’s funds and other resources to respond to local needs on a sustained basis.
The Objectives: The projects will be selected in a competitive process. A selection committee will evaluate and compare the extent to which each project will advance the four goals by determining their relative ability to achieve specific objectives tied to each goal. The four goals and the objectives tied to each goal are as follows:
Goal # 1 – To advance the mission of The Salvation Army:
• The spiritual ministry of The Salvation Army will be integrated with other services of The Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center.
• The Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center will be linked to existing and/or planned Salvation Army corps and social service ministries in the community.
• The government and private support and collaboration in the development and operation of The Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center are compatible with the mission of The Salvation Army.
Goal # 2 – To reflect the vision of Joan Kroc:
• The Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center will encompass multiple program and facility components that address a variety of local needs and provide diverse opportunities for the community.
• The Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center will provide high quality personal development opportunities for young people, families and individuals in an inclusive manner, including education, recreation and arts activities.
• The architectural design and construction will be of high quality, suitability and durability.
Goal # 3– To use Joan Kroc’s funds expeditiously and in a fiscally responsible manner.
• The Salvation Army currently owns or will be able to acquire the project site.
• The project site and surrounding neighborhood are appropriate for development of a Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center.
• The Salvation Army has been awarded all required discretionary approvals of local government or has strong neighborhood and local government support for the timely award of these approvals.
Relocation, demolition, environmental mitigation, and site preparation requirements are reasonable.
Acquisition, construction and overall development costs are reasonable.
Committed local government and/or private support in the form of land and/or funds for the development of The Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center are appropriate given the scale of the project.
A strong project development team is in place or planned at the divisional and local level, including a design and construction team with exceptional and relevant skill and experience.
Goal # 4) To use Joan Kroc’s funds to respond to local needs on a sustained basis.
The project is accessible to and targets a population of children, families and individuals that is underserved and appropriate in size to the scale of the project.
The project elements are appropriate to the needs and interests of the community.
Sufficient new funds can be raised in the community on a sustained basis to cover the local share of operating costs.
A management team and direct service staff with exceptional and relevant skills and experience is in place or proposed at the divisional and local level.
The process is now in place and we look forward to the development of new facilities and programs that will indeed meet the strategic priorities of our territory and the mission of The Salvation Army.