Brands builds for LIFT-UP |

Brands builds for LIFT-UP

When Sally Brands gets an idea to build something, you know it will get built. And that every detail will be taken care of properly.Brands talked to LIFT-UP Executive Director Mike Powell and saw the benefit of his idea to create a building to house a thrift store and office space to pay for the facility’s overhead. Powell then talked to the folks at St. Mary Catholic Church in Rifle, and Brands could see the difficulty a nonprofit organization would have to move fast enough to be effective in the real estate market. Then she started her work for the mission.”I’m a contractor in Rifle. I have a lot of contacts and a good idea of what it takes to build a commercial building. I am familiar with the real estate market, and I’m a member of the downtown development authority, too. When this piece of property became available, my husband and I purchased the property until LIFT-UP could get their board together and buy it from us. Then I agreed to coordinate the project,” Brands said.”It’s been amazing what the local construction community has done. Nobody’s making any money on this project, and hardly anyone I’ve called has refused to help us. I knew they would do it, but it’s been absolutely amazing, the generosity of the construction community.”All materials from Valley Lumber were purchased at their cost, and they went to their supplier to get windows at an even better price. The city of Rifle waived fees and the school district donated the use of chain link fencing for the construction. Some of the local businesses who have gone the extra mile for us are Kuersten Concrete, LaFarge, Walker Electric, Briels Electric, Manupella Drywall, Canyon Plumbing, Dahl of Glenwood Springs, RTM Enterprises, MicroPlastics and Stephensen Siding. We had hourly workers who gave us a day’s worth of labor for free,” she said.LIFT-UP’s new facility in Rifle will contain a food pantry, thrift store and administrative offices. The organization hopes it will be open by the end of April. A grand opening of the new facility is being planned for a future Saturday.LIFT-UP wants everyone to know that only money given specifically for the building was used on the building. The organization has had, and continues to have, people who send donations asking to use it for the new facility. The building will have an elevator, space for the computer system and storage. The main floor will house the thrift store and an office. The second floor has six offices and a break area.”Sally is completely responsible for bringing this project in at a price that I think will be half of its actual value,” LIFT-UP Executive Director Mike Powell said. “Our vision is for thrift store revenue to cover all the administrative costs of operating LIFT-UP. When this is accomplished, we will be able to tell our donors that 100 percent of their donation will be used to help a person in need. Furthermore, as thrift store revenues cover more of our operating expenses, LIFT-UP will be able to increase the services we provide to the community.”With the new building, our need for volunteers will increase significantly,” Powell added. “We really need people who enjoy volunteering in the thrift store or in our food pantry.”Kay Vasilakis'”Nonprofit Spotlight” appears every other Wednesday. She can be contacted at 945-8515, ext. 513, or e-mail

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