For Miranda Anthony, college was home.
The third-year at Ohio Wesleyan University needed to take a mental health break this semester but could not find an affordable place to rent, she said.
Since late August, Anthony, who’s studying sociology and English with plans to go into social work, has received services, which she one day hopes to facilitate in her career, from the Women’s City Club of Delaware, 135 N. Franklin St., near downtown.
She came at a busy time for the club, which houses up to 10 women in need of financial assistance, as it started renovations its roughly 420-square-foot residence kitchen.
The National Association of the Remodeling Industry selected the nonprofit’s kitchen to remodel with help from local association businesses that have donated about $40,000 of materials for the project that was completed this week, said Jo Ingles, publicity chairwoman of the club.
The kitchen needed the makeover as doors were falling off the brownish red-colored cabinets and had sickly yellow-painted walls. Over the past month, the area transformed to now feature chandeliers hanging from the celing to brightly showcase the room and its new windows and granite counter tops with a subway-tiled backsplash.
“It’ll be good for the next 100 years,” said MaryAnn Davis, president of the WCC Foundation. “… We so appreciate this.”
She said the WCC has a long list of other areas in the house that need repair or updated. The nonprofit’s “Windows of Opportunity” campaign is underway to replace the remaining windows of the house one at a time. WCC is hosting a pub crawl from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday in partnership with seven bars in downtown — for more information go to www.wccdelaware.org.
The kitchen project had about 24 volunteers and 17 donors including Lowe’s Silver Drive, OHM International, Konkus Marble & Granite, America’s Floor Source, East Worly Plumbing, Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting, Countryside Electric Inc., Dave Fox Design Build Remodel, Pro Exterior by APCO, Premium Hardware, Frog Hauling, Blair IT, SGO Designer Glass of Columbus, Hamilton Parker Company and Change My Place.
The 4,964-square-foot, three-story house was built in 1887. During the course of its history, the house was once used as a sorority for Ohio Wesleyan University until the WCC took control in 1954 and has continued to shelter low-income women who suffered from domestic violence, trafficking and financial misfortune.
Residents tend to stay at the club for up to two years, but Anthony intends to return to school in January.
Although each resident will now have a locker-style cabinet to store their own food, the kitchen continues to serve as a community spot where residents can converse with each other and have meals together — pineapple upside down cake is the latest crave, Anthony said.
The new kitchen encourages more healthy eating as cooking meals is more cost effective than buying pre-packaged healthy meals, she said.
But the remodel also improves the therapeutic ambience of a community spot where residents can talk about their issues with each other.
And “you can’t put a price on that,” Ingles said.
Brandon Klein can be reached at 740-413-0904 or on Twitter at @brandoneklein.