New Columbia Industries Community Center Thriving After Nearly S - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

New Columbia Industries Community Center Thriving After Nearly Six Months

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A local community center for people with developmental disabilities has now been serving its members for almost six months. A local community center for people with developmental disabilities has now been serving its members for almost six months.

KENNEWICK, WA - A local community center for people with developmental disabilities has now been serving its members for almost six months.

The Columbia Industries Community Center is a place for learning, eating, playing or just relaxing after work, but for the members that spend their time there every day it means much more, a chance to develop relationships like anyone else, despite their disability. 

Ricky farmer says he has been a CI Community Center member for about 5 months.

"You met ricky...but he's always been really quiet and what we've found out is by coming here interacting more with his peers, in not a structured setting like work but more free flowing, that at work, his supervisors have said he's opened up more, he talks, he socializes more," Kay Hamilton, Columbia Industries Program Director said.

The CI Community Center opened in May with one member, now there are nearly 30.

They also have salsa dancing, soon Zumba, plus arts and crafts and cooking lessons.

Columbia Industries hopes to open the community center to high school students with developmental disabilities for when they are on holiday and spring breaks.

Plus, eventually they hope to be able to open the center on weekends and nights.

"That's the good thing about this place it's based on what they to do not what we think they should do and they're able to meet the friends and make the friends they want make," Hamilton said. 

The CI Community Center is always in need of volunteers to hang out with the members.

They also need gift cards for supplies and activities.

If you or anyone you know would like to volunteer, donate or join the center, you can call Columbia Industries at 582-4142.

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