Terry Mundy frames around a new window in a ground floor office at the Center. He’s one of many volunteers assisting with the project. Photo: Andy Mager

October was a very busy month at the new Syracuse Center for Peace and Social Justice. Volunteers have helped to make the ground floor a brighter and cleaner place to work. As work crews cleaned up, the Westcott Community Center's Arts and Education Project began moving in to what we expect to be a productive home.

On the west side of the building, a maple tree that was damaged in the 1998 Labor Day storm has been stabilized. Other trees that were too severely damaged have been removed, making all area roofs and cars safer when the next wind storm comes.

On the second floor, volunteer crews have removed the less-than-attractive drop ceiling. The next step is to repair the holes and damaged plaster on the ceiling in preparation for the new lighting and heating systems to be installed later this month, preparing the way for SPC to move in before the end of the year. Next year, we'll develop a mezzanine space and a front lobby with an elevator to make the building accessible.

Board members and other volunteers are gearing up to launch phase two of our capital campaign. We expect to raise the funds necessary to complete the full project and establish a firm base for many years to come.

-Karen Hall