Mon, 2022-02-07 22:54 david_morris
By BRITTANY FHOLER
Operation Stand Down Central Texas welcomed dozens of people into their new facility Saturday morning with a grand opening and ribbon cutting.
Originally founded in January 2015 by Joann Courtland and her mother Trudy Bolton out of Courtland’s garage, Operation Stand Down Central Texas now has a permanent home with its new facility located at 201 Carpenter St.
OSDCT Director and co-founder Joann Courtland was emotional after the ribbon cutting and said it was a long time coming.
“We had a lot of setbacks with the building and supply chain stuff and all that other things, and for it to finally be open and ready to start helping people, I’m just so happy and so very proud that today is here,” Courtland said.
The facility has double the square footage compared to the previous space it was operating out of in Cove Terrace Shopping Center.
With 4,500 square feet, the facility features an office space, a lobby, a computer room, two ADA-accessible bathrooms, a kitchen space, two sets of washers and dryers and plenty of space for racks of clothes, shoes, hygiene products and more.
These items will go to the homeless population at the organization’s Stand Down events, held in the spring and fall, and to those who come into the facility seeking help.
“I know this is going to change lives, and we’ve already changed lives doing what we do, but this is just going to be – it’s that next level, and I’m just so happy to be a part of it and happy that things are moving forward,” Courtland said.
Courtland said that they had been at the Cove Terrace Shopping Center for almost six years before moving into their new facility. In that time, the organization has helped countless veterans in coordination with other organizations and agencies.
With this expanded space, the organization will be able to make a larger impact.
“We want to be that conduit, you know,” Courtland said. “While we can’t do everything for everybody…we partner with dozens of agencies, so we can funnel here, we can funnel there. We can get that dialogue started. That’s the whole thing is asking for that first hand.”
Courtland gave a tour of the inside of the building to people in attendance. One of the features that this facility has that is different compared to the previous locations also includes the roll-up door which will allow for loading and unloading with ease.
“Whenever we would load up trucks for our event, we were getting those blue bins through a little bitty door,” Courtland said as she gave the tour. “Now, we have a big door we can roll up and everything can just go up on a truck and we can head to Killeen.”
The next Stand Down will be held March 19 at the Killeen Civic and Conference Center, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and will be open to the homeless population of Coryell and Bell Counties.
The new building will be open 9 a.m. to noon on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Courtland encourages people to drop off donations, but only when the facility is open so that the items remain in good condition. For more information on Operation Stand Down Central Texas, visit www.osdct.org.
Copperas Cove Leader Press
2210 U.S. 190
Copperas Cove, TX 76522