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Salt Lake City — American Cancer Society is set to begin the next phase in building a Hope Lodge in Utah, a free home-away-from-home for cancer patients traveling to Salt Lake City to receive care. While it will still continue fundraising to reach its total campaign goal, the society will complete the demolition of the former LDS meetinghouse on site.
“We have rallied together with donors from the community to fight cancer in a very real way and it’s deeply rewarding to see those efforts taking shape and moving forward in this next phase of the campaign,” said Katie Eccles, Hope Lodge Board Chair. “We have implemented an exciting and innovative model where non-profits work together to magnify donations and help as many people as possible. We have worked to extend what was originally a single donation to Hope Lodge and touched even more people throughout the community.”
The American Cancer Society has brought new life to the former LDS church building on the site by extending its resources to people across the state. American Cancer Society and Habitat for Humanity worked together the organizations to harvest materials from the church building to build homes for needy families or as donations to Habitat’s retail store, ReStore, where recycled materials are sold and profits go to families in need. To date, it is the largest material donation Habitat for Humanity has received in Utah. Items ranging from woodwork to hardware and lighting fixtures were removed from the building to be reused in various ways.
The American Cancer Society also removed five, 30-foot pine trees on site and transported them to the Navajo Tribe near Mexican Hat in San Juan County where they will be re-used. Affordable Tree Care donated the tree removal and Tramcor Corporation donated the transportation of the trees from Salt Lake to the Navajo reservation. Although a longer and more demanding process, this deconstruction ultimately helped many in the community and kept several tons of building material out of Utah landfills. As the final demolition takes place, the remaining materials will be separated and sorted for additional reuse and recycling.
Fundraising efforts for Hope Lodge have raised $14.8 million of the $18 million needed to bring the resource to Utah. The American Cancer Society continues to call on the community and donors to raise the remaining funds in order to begin the building of the facility.
“We have received many generous donations and are making visible progress, but the realization of opening the doors of Hope Lodge to cancer patients and their caregivers still requires additional support,” said Pam Higginson, vice president and Hope Lodge campaign director for the American Cancer Society Great West Division. “Cancer patients shouldn’t have to worry about lodging arrangements or burdensome travel costs. We are committed to bringing them this remarkable house of healing to let them concentrate on what’s most important—getting well. This demolition is yet another step forward in making this happen.”
The final demolition of the building will be performed as part of a donation from the demolition division of A-Core Concrete Cutting Inc. The demolition of the building began on Monday, and the society hopes to open its doors during the summer of 2015. R&O Construction has been selected as the builder of Hope Lodge.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints donated the piece of land and building on the corner of 100 South and 400 East in downtown Salt Lake City to the American Cancer Society in 2011 after several years of non-use.