Early Wednesday night, the old Coca-Cola building in downtown Bloomington officially opened its doors for the dedication of the new Middle Way House and Food Works business.
For five years, the New Wings Community Partnership collected over 6 million dollars – 3 million from private donors alone – to complete the project. In 2005, the Middle Way House purchased the old Coca-Cola building with the hopes of increasing accessibility as well as expanding the opportunities for the women of Middle Way.
In response to holding the dedication of the New Wings Project, Chair of the New Wings Community Partnership Laurie McRobbie said, “It means we did it. I mean we found the support in a lot of different ways. Like every non-profit we look for sources of support everywhere we can find them.”
Donations from local government, businesses, organizations, and community members made it possible for the new Middle Way House to be finished.
“I think the power of the vision for this building, the power of what Middle Way is and what it can continue to be and become really drew supporters to this so it means of all that. It means we’re doing something important for the women who get the services from Middle Way, it also means we’re doing something important for Bloomington,” said McRobbie.
The new Middle Way House also means a new location for Food Works, a full service catering business owned and operated by Middle Way. Donna Storm is the Business and Operations Manager for Food Works for Middle Way House.
“We’re getting together with a lot of people in the community that have a lot of the same interests and we have a lot of the same goals and at the same time we can provide additional jobs to women to help them transition away from situations that have been hurtful to them in the past,” Storm said.
Food Works has benefited from the donations and volunteers in the community as it is a branch of the Middle Way House.
“It’s been pretty exciting, meeting all the people in the community that have a real interest in local food, local businesses, helping the Middle Way House.”
Over the next few weeks Food Works, the New Wings Community Partnership, and the Middle Way House will work together to move slowly into the new building.