The local VFW facilities are utilized frequently for not only Rotary events but also community events such as celebrations of lives and fundraiser for members of the community to help pay medical bills. Having access to the facilities has proven to be instrumental for the community in supporting one another.
During the course of 2019 the Thermopolis Rotary was awarded $3,000 and matched the $3,000 as per the original agreement and budget in order to make the improvements discussed in the following paragraphs. In addition the VFW held a fund raiser to capitalize on the donated funds and was able to raise over $17,000 to put towards repairs and improvements that the building desperately needs. Unfortunately during the spring and summer of 2019 the Town of Thermopolis including the VFW building experienced two severe hail storms. The damage endured by the VFW was critical and required immediate attention and repairs totaling $24,000. The majority of the repairs have now been completed beside a few minor fixes the contractor needs to complete as weather permits. It is the clubs hope that the original grant and our own match can be put towards helping pay for the roof repairs that were crucial in keeping the building in a usable manner. The VFW club did not receive any insurance money for the repairs and is forced to fund the repairs with reserve including taking money out of their scholarship program. By the rotary being able to apply the $6,000 mentioned above of the $3,000 grant and our club's match it would drastically help make up the difference the VFW club needs.
This leads us to the problem that was originally at hand and the repairs that have not been addressed on the inside of the building. After water damage to the ceiling and walls from the storms the following repairs are even more necessary for not only the club but all community members that are able to utilize the building. The kitchen is in need of being updated along with the bath rooms and the large room typically used for all kinds of community events. $3,950 will be used for to update repair the kitchen to bring it up to date and more efficient. $3,050 will be used to update the bath rooms with new fixtures including toilets, sinks, paper towel dispensers and upgrades to the paint. The Third part of the project will consist of updating the large room that acts as a banquet hall. It is in desperate need of a face lift with pant along with ceiling tile updates after the storms of 2019. This part of the project is anticipated to take at least $1,000. The large room is roughly 1200 square feet and will benefit drastically from an update in the paint. Therefore we are requesting $4000. Additional work will be put into the facilities as funding allows. The majority of the labor will be on a voluntary basis in order to make the funds go as far as possible to have a greater impact for the community.
It is the Thermopolis Rotary Club's hope that they are able to receive more funding to further address the problems that have been experienced during the course of 2019 and the problems that had to be put to the side while the roof is being addressed. By being allowed to use the initial funding towards the roof repair it will always future work to be protected. Currently it does not make sense to do any work to the interior of the building until the contractor is able to complete all roof repairs. Once the repairs have been completed it will be a great time to focus on the the interior of the building again addressing the water damage that has taken place and preventing the spread of mold or further issues that may compound from the hail storms.