North Central Massachusetts Development Corporation’s Regional Business Investment Fund Establishes Community Center

Pictured Left to Right in the photo are Sandie Cataldo, senior economic development manager, North Central Massachusetts Chamber of Commerce and North Central Massachusetts Development Corporation; Cailte Kelley, Edward Jones and WCAC board member; Miranda Jennings, executive director, Winchendon CAC; and Rebecca Beaton, vice president of lending, North Central Massachusetts Chamber of Commerce and North Central Massachusetts Development Corporation.

The WCAC received a loan of $216,000 from NCMDC’s RBIF, in partnership with Athol Savings Bank, to renovate the space formerly known as Playaway Bowling Alley. The non-profit organization serves more than 450 households by providing healthy food, emergency heating services, housing assistance, economic mobility, and more.

The new, larger space will allow the WCAC to grow the services it offers and expand its reach into the community. The new facility will be known as “Winchendon Works Community Hub,” and has plans to include youth empowerment programs, services for those struggling with chronic health issues, and even a grocery store to promote food security.

“As the need for equitable access to healthy food, housing, and economic mobility grows, the WCAC is expanding to answer the call,” said Miranda Jennings, executive director, WCAC, “Thank you to the North Central Massachusetts Development Corporation for offering this type of funding to support our expansion and helping us offer more services to those who need it the most.”

The Regional Business Investment Fund (RBIF) is an initiative recommended by the North Central Massachusetts Chamber of Commerce One North Central regional economic development plan to encourage more real estate development in the region. The funding can be used by developers for engineering, soft costs, site work, infrastructure and hard costs for specific developments in the 26 communities that make up the North Central region.