LACASA Center, an independent, locally-based nonprofit organization that provides comprehensive services for victims of child abuse, domestic violence and sexual assault has purchased land for a future new agency site.
The organization, which currently is located on West Grand River Avenue in Howell Township, recently bought a 20-acre parcel of land off Tooley Road across from the county’s EMS Center. The property, which was purchased for approximately $500,000, will be the site of a new facility.
LACASA President & CEO Bobette Schrandt said that the agency’s current building, constructed in 2002 following a community capital campaign, has grown too small for their needs. Schrandt says that agency, along with its Crisis Shelter, have experienced severe space shortages over the last few years. The organization recently received approval for a modular office to sit in its parking lot so as to help alleviate the space demands.
“Our services and programs have continued to expand based on community need. The number of shelter residents and agency clients have continued to increase,” Schrandt said. “Our staff has tripled in size over the last 10 years, and growth in every area of our organization has exceeded the space needed for us to operate efficiently and effectively.”
LACASA provides nearly 30 programs and services for victims, survivors and the community at large. “We have exceeded space capacity in our Crisis Shelter, counseling areas, community education departments, and administrative office,” said Schrandt. “We cannot build up or out at our current location and experts advised us to plan for the future by identifying a new site that would meet the expanding needs of our clients and the community.”
Schrandt said the agency already has fielded inquiries from parties interested in purchasing its current building.
LACASA recently told the Howell Township Planning Commission that they are hoping to have the new facility built and occupied within three years. The nonprofit is in the strategic planning phase of the project and expects to make a formal public announcement in the fall.
LACASA officially was established in 1982, providing advocacy services for domestic violence victims and their children. Originally called Livingston Area Council Against Child Abuse (LACASA), the nonprofit quickly expanded to include services for victims of child abuse and sexual assault. Because the name no longer accurately represented the organization’s full range of services, it officially changed its name to simply LACASA in 2012.