Our Goal - Restart Change!
Like thousands of hotels, resorts, zoos, skating rinks, bowling lanes, video arcades, and other entertainment venues, the Change Center is at risk of not being able to survive a continued extended period without infusion of additional funding. To that end, we have already taken several steps to mitigate expenses to include receiving PPP funds, furloughing all staff outside of the Executive Director and the CFO, reducing operational expenses by $30,000/month, writing and receiving grant funding from East TN Foundation, TN CARES ACT, Trinity Health Foundation, and TN Business Relief Program.
The Change Center must survive. The Change Center was created to save the lives of young people. The consequences of not having the Change Center are dire. We need to preserve this space. The Change Center seeks to raise $100,000.00 so that we may restart change and continue to serve as a valuable resource for local youth, to create a center-city space where teens and young adults are valued, safe, and their hope is nurtured by providing a strategically-located partnership facility that makes recreation, leadership development, and job opportunities available.
Vision of Change
The Change Center has indeed become the place it was envisioned to be: a safe space for teens to be themselves, provide employment opportunities for youth in the community, and a place of hope. Since opening in 2018:
∙ 50 teens have been hired and have worked over 8,000 hours, earning over $100K.
∙ Over 4,000 teenagers have spent their Saturday nights at the Change Center.
∙10,000 supplemental meals were bagged, and hot meals provided out amid this pandemic.
∙The community has seen a 72% decrease in criminal activity during operating hours, according to the KPD Crime Analysis Division.
Change Center Components Include:
Roller skating rink, multi-purpose sports venue, climbing wall, movie wall, concert stage, DJ/music mixing booth, video games, café, birthday parties/special events venue, and meeting space.
Why do we need the Change Center?
The Change Center was birthed out of the Save Our Sons Initiative which focuses on reducing violence-related deaths & increasing opportunities for success for boys & young men of color. The Save Our Sons Advisory Committee, designated by former Mayor Rogero in 2013, found that these teens & young adults, who think they are too old for after school and youth programs, begin hanging out on the streets with no jobs & nothing to do-a recipe for boredom, bad role models, poor decisions, & death. The Change Center created a safe space for teens during non-school hours and opportunities for part time employment.
When will The Change Center open?
We are continuing to monitor active cases and following guidelines from state, local, and board of health regulations to open safely for large public gathering spaces.
The Change Center is still open for private use!
While our facility is currently closed for day-to-day public use due to Covid-19 regulations, we’re still able to offer a great event space for private birthday parties, meetings, banquets, and other get togethers. Our premier skating facility, events center and meeting rooms offer a wonderful space for a variety of personal, school or business gatherings. Our large facility allows plenty of room for proper social distancing and we adhere to all state, local, and board of health safety guidelines to prioritize your well-being. Masks and temperature checks are required, and sanitizing stations are located throughout the facility. In addition, we utilize Ionopure products and are a MicroShield 360 certified agency to further mitigate risk and exposure to Covid-19.