Pine Castle Launches First Major Capital Campaign to Help More of Jacksonville's Growing Disabled Population

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Pine Castle is launching a $4.5 million Life Enrichment Initiative to expand the availability of needed services for a greater number of Jacksonville’s citizens with severe and profound levels of cognitive and physical disabilities. The plans also include expansion of disability services for the growing number of senior citizens.

Pine Castle is launching a $4.5 million Life Enrichment Initiative to expand the availability of needed services for a greater number of Jacksonville’s citizens with severe and profound levels of cognitive and physical disabilities. The plans also include expansion of disability services for the growing number of senior citizens. The Life Enrichment Initiative is Pine Castle’s first major capital campaign since the organization’s founding in 1952. “During a time of funding cutbacks on the state and national levels, this campaign will ensure that we can increase our capacity to address unmet needs of those with disabilities currently waiting for services within the Northeast Florida community, and help them to lead meaningful, engaging lives,” explained Pine Castle’s Executive Director, Jon May.

Pine Castle exists to help people with intellectual challenges improve their quality of life, attain greater self-sufficiency and enjoy meaningful inclusion in the community. Each year, Pine Castle serves approximately 350 individuals with mental retardation, autism, spina bifida, cerebral palsy, Down Syndrome and traumatic brain injuries.

The Life Enrichment Initiative will equip the organization for the 21st century. It calls for the addition of a state-of-the-art Life Enrichment Center that will replace outdated campus facilities presently housing programs that address critical needs for life skills training and the agency’s seniors program, and will provide for expansion of program space for Pine Castle’s educational collaboration with FCCJ. The building will include classrooms, a computer lab, and a multi-purpose assembly area to be used for campus events, flexible vocational training space, indoor recreation, and Special Olympics training, among other uses. Explains General Chair Doug Milne, “We’ve selected TTV Architects to design the 17,000-square-foot Life Enrichment Center which will be the cornerstone of this campaign and the centerpiece of the Pine Castle campus.” Adds Board President Susan Hamilton, “The Life Enrichment Center is instrumental in our efforts to expand Pine Castle programs. It will address a growing need for updated service space, and will incorporate our first health clinic and designated areas for speech, physical, and sensory therapies, as well as fitness and nutrition education.”

The Campaign Leadership team is comprised of General Chair Doug Milne of Milne of Buckingham & McCorvey; Board President Susan Hamilton with CSX and Pine Castle’s Executive Director, Jon May. The Campaign Steering Committee includes:

Dr. Thom Borowy

Lad Daniels, Jacksonville City Council

John Delaney, University of North Florida

Hickory Fant, First Guaranty Bank

Brian Flynn, Mint Magazine

Mattie Fraser, Immediate Past Governor of the Florida District Civitan

Nat Glover, Former Sheriff, Duval County

Arnett Greene, State Farm Insurance

Hugh Greene, Baptist Health

Jim Henry, Diversified Clinical Services

Mary Jarrett, Coffman, Coleman, Andrews & Grogan

Bruno Littleton, Humana

Mary Bland Love, Gobelman, Love, Gavin & Wasilenko    

Ellen & Woody Mills, Woody’s Bar-B-Q

Ron Shamlaty, APL Logistics

Jim Tullis, Tullis Insurance

As one of the first organizations in Florida to serve children with mental retardation, Pine Castle helped pioneer the philosophy that individuals with development disabilities have the right to live full and productive lives. Since 1965, when public schools began serving children with special needs, Pine Castle has focused on supporting adults to achieve their potential after graduation. Today, it has grown to become one of Northeast Florida’s largest training, residential care, and job placement centers for adults with developmental disabilities. To learn more about Pine Castle and how to be a part of its Life Enrichment Initiative, visit http://www.pinecastle.org or call 904-733-2650.

About Pine Castle

Pine Castle is a primary non-profit entity that serves Duval, Clay, St. Johns, Nassau and Baker County residents. Its mission is to enrich the lives of individuals with developmental disabilities and traumatic brain injuries by providing opportunities to become more self-sufficient, independent and productive citizens in our community. Pine Castle’s vision is for a community where adults with developmental and other disabilities achieve their greatest potential for independence. Pine Castle is located at 4911 Spring Park Road, Jacksonville. More information is available at http://www.pinecastle.org.

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