Kansas City Kansas Community College (KCKCC) received $12 million from the State of Kansas for the future Kansas City, Kansas Community Education, Health and Wellness Center.
The funds were part of the state budget signed by Gov. Laura Kelly April 20.
“This budget delivers on promises I made when I was first elected, including investing in our economic development tools, funding higher education, stopping the irresponsible practice of robbing from our highway fund, and much more,” Kelly said in a press release.
The 130,000 square-foot downtown center will serve as an anchor institution for Kansas City, KS to provide health, wellness and education services to address the socio-economic and workforce development needs in the downtown urban core and eastern Wyandotte County.
KCKCC, the lead partner, is collaborating with the YMCA of Greater Kansas City, Wyandot Behavioral Health Network, Swope Health, CommunityAmerica Credit Union and Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools on this project.
“This project is designed with a vision to lift an entire community out of poverty and create systemic change, from the inside out, to develop the whole person and provide more equitable access to education and workforce training opportunities,” said Dr. Greg Mosier, president of KCKCC. “This center will be a first of its kind, national model for nonprofit collaborations across the country.”
KCKCC leaders say the funding is critical to the success of the new downtown center and brings fundraising efforts to $40 million of the $70 million needed to build and outfit the facility.
The center will not only house educational and training programs for high-paying, in-demand careers but will also offer multiple youth activities, healthy living programs, mental and behavioral health counseling, direct health care services, financial wellness and other support services.
“This holistic approach will break the chains of generational poverty for the people we serve in our community who need us the most,” Mosier said. “KCKCC is very thankful of everyone’s efforts to make this appropriation a reality. The college, and the partners investing in this project, fully believe that a zip-code should not determine a person’s level of success, health or social well-being. KCKCC envisions working with its partners and philanthropic supporters to create a one-of-a-kind center that prepares our community for success in their lives and careers.”