VSECU Helps Project Independence of Barre


VSECU Helps Project Independence of Barre Buy New Building

They call their new, renovated office and adult day care center the “P.I. Palace.” With the lyrics of “Downtown,” the 1960s hit by Petula Clark, as their theme, staff, participants, supporters and friends of Project Independence of Barre gathered to celebrate the new center at 81 N. Main St., Barre, at an open house and ribbon cutting ceremony on Oct. 20.

Serving central Vermonters since 1975, Project Independence is a non-profit adult day service for elderly and disabled adults who wish to stay in their own homes versus nursing homes or residential care facilities. PI offers health services and activities to stimulate physical and mental well-being. In addition, the service provides caregivers respite so that they can take a break to attend to personal needs or just to rest or relax. PI draws from 18 towns in Washington and northern Orange counties, currently serving a total of 108 clients each month.

The new, larger center will allow PI to expand to meet a growing demand for adult day services. The new center boasts a spacious, well-lit recreation area, commercial-grade kitchen, shower and restroom facilities to accommodate the disabled, physical therapy room and more. Dee Rollins, PI’s executive director, says the downtown location makes the center more accessible to clients and closer to other services.

According to Rollins, when looking for financing for the new center, she called a number of local financial institutions, but she said VSECU was the only one that responded with an offer of help. She and Scott Nichols of VBiz, VSECU’s business services department, worked closely together to construct a loan that would meet their needs.

“VSECU and VBiz were proud to partner with PI to make this dream become a reality” Nichols said. “PI has an excellent staff and receives great support from the community it serves. At VSECU, our focus is on small businesses and non-profits just like PI.”

The Project Independence open house also kicked off their Capital Campaign, a two-year fundraiser. For more about Project Independence, visit


(Top): (left to right) Sen. Bill Doyle; Kathy Town, secretary-PI Board of Directors; Dee Rollins, PI executive director; Linda Kuban, PI assistant executive director; Steve Koenemann, president-PI Board of Directors; and Scott Nichols, VSECU’s VBiz, join in open house festivities of the “P.I. Palace.” Koenemann is vice-president-information officer at VSECU, and Town is a long-time employee of VSECU, currently working in the Information Systems department.

(Center): Dee Rollins, PI executive director, and Steve Koenemann, president of PI’s Board of Directors, share the scissors following the ribbon cutting ceremony.

(Bottom): Scott Nichols, business services advisor with VBiz, VSECU’s business services for nonprofits and small businesses, addresses the audience at the PI open house.