USDA Funds to Provide Boost for Ivanhoe Youth Center


(Future facility)

Ivanhoe, a small unincorporated community in north Tulare County, will receive a $200,000 boost to repair and renovate the community’s only youth center.

Chairman of the Tulare County Board of Supervisors Steve Worthley, who represents Ivanhoe, said officials with United States Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development Department informed Tulare County this week about a $200,000 grant award in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funds.

The $200,000 grant award will be used to repair and renovate a building recently acquired by Tulare County, which will be operated by the Boys & Girls Clubs of Tulare County as a youth center. The funding will be used for construction of a games room, classroom, computer learning center, art room, “Kids Café,” and kitchen. A new heating and air conditioning until will be installed and insulation and structural improvements will also be made.

 “This funding will serve as a tremendous benefit to the community of Ivanhoe,” Chairman Worthley said. “Tulare County will continue to strive to provide positive activities for our youth.”

The facility is owned by Tulare County and leased to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Tulare County to serve the community of Ivanhoe. Boys & Girls Clubs of Tulare County Executive Director Galen Quenzer said the grant award is the result of a collaborative effort between the Tulare County Board of Supervisors, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Tulare County, and the community of Ivanhoe.

“This is such an exciting project; not only because it will provide a beautiful new building for Ivanhoe’s youth, but because the entire community – the county, the surrounding farmers, those who used to live in Ivanhoe, and those who now live and work in the town, are 100 percent behind this clubhouse,” Quenzer said. “We received overwhelming support for what we are working to accomplish. This is not just a Tulare County or Boys & Girls Club project; this is true community collaboration.”

Currently, the Boys & Girls Club of Tulare County is operating out of the Ivanhoe Lions Club building until the new site is complete.

Tulare County Capital Projects Manager Brian Summers said Ivanhoe’s youth will be able to use the facility by January 2011. In the upcoming months, Tulare County and community volunteers will work to make improvements to the facility.