Mary Pennock, a Family Resource Center parenting class graduate and volunteer, and her three daughters share the benefits they’ve received from
Mary Pennock, a Family Resource Center parenting class graduate and volunteer, and her three daughters share the benefits they’ve received from participating in the programs the center offers. (

Sara Waite / Sterling Journal-Advocate)

Representatives of the Family Resource Center got a chance Monday to talk up the services the Sterling-based non-profit provides with a major philanthropic player in the state.

Members of the Colorado Health Foundation board visited Sterling and met with Family Resource Center board and staff members to learn more about what the center does, as well as needs within the community that relate to the foundation’s mission of “bringing health in reach for all Coloradans.” The foundation provides grants and other resources to agencies and communities across the state “to help all Coloradans live their healthiest lives.”

A presentation board shows the concepts being incorporated into a renovation on the back lot at the Family Resource Center.
A presentation board shows the concepts being incorporated into a renovation on the back lot at the Family Resource Center. (

The meeting included an update on the FRC’s back lot renovation project. According to Mandy Ritter, who is heading up the project, the space will feature a community garden and outdoor kitchen that will provide educational opportunities on growing your own food in a sustainable way as well as cooking classes.

The plans call for some family-style seating as well as space for a variety of outdoor games and activities. The area, which was beautified this spring with a Rise Above mural by Denver artist Bimmer Torres, will see additional color from another mural that will be done by youth participants in FRC’s summer programs.

Ritter said the space will also include an outdoor theatre and water feature being built by Wisdom Rides. “It will be a very versatile space,” she said.

In addition to serving the center’s programs, the lot will also be available for private events and functions.

A number of local businesses are contributing to the project, and volunteers include local student-athletes.

The foundation representatives also heard about other projects underway in the community. FRC founder and former executive director Karen Torres talked about the efforts underway to develop a creative arts district in Sterling, and how the mural has been an asset to the public art collection.

Members of the Family Resource Center board and staff visit with representatives of the Colorado Health Foundation at a session in Sterling Monday evening.
Members of the Family Resource Center board and staff visit with representatives of the Colorado Health Foundation at a session in Sterling Monday evening. (

Sara Waite / Sterling Journal-Advocate)

Tom Westfall, who has taught parenting…

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