Child and Family Services Cuts Ribbon on New Youth Center

Excitement and gratitude mixed in the air on May 12 as Child and Family Services (CFS) honored the Stebbins Family and PROCON in a ribbon-cutting ceremony marking the opening of their new youth center. The newly renovated center was named “The Katherine and Herbert Stebbins Youth Resource Center” to honor the parents of PROCON CEO and Chairman Mark Stebbins. Mark was in attendance with his wife Sally and mother Katherine “Tinka” Stebbins. City leaders, advocates, and supporters joined with them to celebrate.

President/CEO of Child and Family Services Borja Alvarez de Toledo welcomed guests and paid tribute to the Stebbins’ 25-years of unwavering support and how they made the youth center possible. Mayor Ted Gatsas spoke to the attendees, commending the Stebbins and PROCON and added, “Child and Family Services is an incredible place and there are going to be a lot of children taken care of because of this place. Thanks from the bottom of my heart on behalf of every child and citizen in this community.”

In fact, last year the architectural and construction management firm donated $200,000 towards the Center’s renovations, along with the resources of their design team, who helped with furniture acquisition and interior fit-ups. In March of 2016, they added to that amount with an additional $50,000 for operations of the center.

As it turns out, the new Center’s opening was commemorative in many ways for Mark Stebbins. Lincoln Street happens to be the very location where Mark’s grandfather, Blanchard, opened the family business in 1935. CFS acquired the building, before knowing of the connection with the Stebbins history. The association was discovered - to everyone's surprise at the 2015 SleepOut event. It was a serendipitous moment for all – one that has made the partnership between PROCON and CFS more meaningful.

Mark Stebbins thanked everyone for supporting CFS. “My brother and I grew up in the building behind this one, and my father and grandfather spent years of their lives here. We are very proud of our roots in Manchester and we hope that my parent’s name on the facility will be a reminder that every teenager deserves love and guidance. We are so glad to be able to give back to the City that gave us so much.”

The youth center opened its doors last November and provides support services for homeless youth in the City, ages 12 to 22-years-old. The facility provides them with a hub to address personal needs such as receiving a meal, doing laundry or taking a hot shower. However, they may also work towards educational or career goals, or participate in workforce development and finding jobs.

As the event drew to a close, the air resonated with compassion as two youth shared positive experiences of how CFS has changed the direction of their lives, followed by candid questions and answers. In his welcome address Borja summarized the effort needed to reach Manchester’s homeless youth, “It takes every one of us lending our support to make a difference in the lives of these kids.”

Child and Family Services of New Hampshire is a private nonprofit dedicated to advancing the well-being of children by providing an array of social services to strengthen family life and by promoting community commitment to the needs of children. http://www.cfsnh.org/

PROCON is single-source design and construction firm specializing in aviation, commercial, educational, hospitality, institutional, industrial, senior living and multi-family residential projects. Celebrating 81 plus years of business, PROCON is highly regarded for its design-build philosophy and commitment to client success. www.proconinc.com.
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