Northwest Bible Church leaders held a dedication for the new Northwest Community Center in the Vickery Meadow neighborhood of Dallas on Feb. 26, 2016. The faith-based center aims to assist local refugee populations through education, medical services and donated household items, to name a few. (All photos by Danny Fulgencio)
For many years the Advocate has been publishing stories about Vickery Meadow, the dense refugee- and immigrant-heavy community that borders Lake Highlands, East Dallas and Preston Hollow. Residents and churches from the aforementioned neighborhoods have long contributed time and efforts into helping Vickery Meadow whether by volunteering at the learning center, mentoring new American residents, or even starting their own charities to meet outstanding needs (like Jason Clarke who founded Seek the Peace).
Read: Seek the Peace and the plight of Dallas refugees.
This week, a new community center opens in Vickery Meadow. It is a 15,000-square-foot building built by Northwest Bible Church of Preston Hollow. Inside, the Healing Hands Ministry of Lake Highlands will operate a medical clinic. The aim of this ambitious project, says Pastor Neil Tomba, is to “improve the lives of the refugee children and adults who live in Vickery Meadow.”
Read: Healing Hands: Healthcare, reformed.
“The need is great, and we are truly thankful for … so many who have come together to help make this center a reality. We hope this is just the beginning, and this center inspires others to step forward and help.”
Tomba specifically thanked partners Texas Health Resources and Healing Hands. Scroll for more information and photos.
A crowd gathered for the opening ceremonies of the new community center in Vickery Meadow.
Four full-time staffers have been hired to direct programs and minister to families.
Speakers in attendance included Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins (pictured) and Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings.
A large gathering area will accommodate 250 people; regular worship services will be held in the languages of refugee congregations.
Training rooms will be used to teach English and job skills courses, and a resource room will be packed with everyday essentials such as diapers, toiletry items and basic supplies, a spokesperson says.
Children’s area includes arts and craft supplies, and Half Price Books donated youth library materials.
Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings was among the speakers at last Friday’s Northwest Community Center opening.
The community center is equipped with computers, a printer and wi fi for the residents of Vickery Meadow.
Community center staff and their families all live in the Vickery Meadow neighborhood. It is part of an effort to “better understand the issues refugees face and to make stronger connections,” a spokesperson for Northwest Community Center says.
Refugees and visiting ministries can use collaborative rooms to conduct meetings.
A teen hang-out room offers ping pong and other games.
The new center features a “warm and inviting wi-fi equipped lobby with modern, comfortable furniture,” staffers say.
The center will be open to the Vickery Meadow community six days a week.
Read: Five Days of Frenzy: Vickery Meadow, Ebola and out-of-control media.
The Northwest Community Center is open Monday-Friday from 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m., with many programs operating after hours, and 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturdays. Sundays are reserved for refugee worship services. Contact the center at 469.453.7723.