GU, D19 may partner to create senior center

First Byline: 
Laura J. McKenzie - Regional Publisher

The former Blackville Country Club is being considered to become a satellite senior center under Generations Unlimited with upgrades possibly funded through the Lt. Governor's office.
No longer a country club, the building is owned and maintained by the D19 School District and often leased for community events.
Gwendolyn Littlejohn with GU met with the D19 school board on August 19 to inquire if the district was interested in leasing the site and got their tentative approval.
Littlejohn said money for the renovations to the building is expected to come from Lt. Governor Yancey McGill's office. McGill expressed an interest in seeing a satellite site after visiting the GU center in Barnwell and learning of the need in Blackville.
Littlejohn said GU officials considered a number of possible sites and settled on the Blackville County Club as the best potential choice.
She said GU would use the building from 8 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. on weekdays, providing lunch and activities for seniors. GU will be responsible for maintenance and utilities, she said.
Responding to a variety of questions from the board members, Littlejohn said a daily minimum of 25 seniors (age 60 and over) using the site would be required to maintain the program. Seniors will be provided free transportation to and from the facility but lunch contributions would be between $1 and $1.25 a day.
Renovations to the country club could include a variety of items, including upgrading the kitchen and bathrooms, to make the site handicapped accessible and viable for GU's offerings. Exact details are yet to be determined, said Littlejohn, as GU needed to find out if the school board was interested in leasing the site.
Littlejohn indicated the district would still be able to rent the building for other events when GU activities were not in session.
"It would be a win-win situation," said Littlejohn.
The exact terms of the lease have yet to be determined, said D19 Superintendent Dr. Teresa Pope. She said she wanted to bring it to the board first to see if they were interested before working out the details.
Carroll Priester moved to "tentatively approve" the arrangement. Her motion was seconded by Jameka Hagood and approved unanimously by the full board.