Kachemak Bay Family Planning Clinic receives support for building repairs

Kachemak Bay Family Planning Clinic was awarded a $10,000 grant from First National Bank Alaska to support KBFPC’s recent emergency capital project — repairing one of the two buildings on the KBFPC campus on Ben Walters Lane in Homer.

According to a press release, during an unusually rainy summer in 2023, the building experienced significant damage to its lower level, which previously housed a teen after-school program. Along with donations from anonymous donors, First National’s contribution supported major exterior and interior repairs recently completed to prevent further damage to the building and return the space to usable condition.

“Helping our neighbors in times of need is a part of First National Bank Alaska’s long-standing mission,” First National Board Chair and CEO/President Betsy Lawer said in the release. “We’re glad we could assist KBFPC in their continued effort to provide important healthcare services and help shape a brighter tomorrow for Alaskans on the Kenai Peninsula.”

The cost of the project will total more than $50,000.

Claudia Haines, CEO of the KBFPC, told Homer News that the downstairs room of the building suffered significant water damage.

“ … All of the drywall was ripped up to about where you can see the wainscoting in the room because with the storms from the summer the ground was so saturated that the foundation failed. There was water in every inch and all of the exterior walls of the building were wet, so all of that was pulled up and the flooring was replaced,” she said.

Haines has been in her position with KBFPC for about two and a half years.

The project began in the fall of 2023 with funds from anonymous donors in order to start on the exterior components of the building restructure to stop the damage from flooding.

The flooding happened in early July and it took a few months before the project, which included a new drainage system and new gravel all the way out to the parking lot, could start in September.

The project also includes replacing furniture that was damaged during the summer 2023 storms. Construction components were conducted by the Harness Brothers Construction LLC in Homer.

Chelsea Johnson with 123 Drywall and Finishing conducted work on the interior components of the project.

Due to additional extenuating circumstances the prior after-school program will not reopen, but the newly restored space will be used for upcoming projects that support KBFPC’s mission of providing inclusive, low- and no-cost reproductive health care and sexual health education to communities on the Kenai Peninsula from Cooper Landing to Kachemak Bay.

“Within the next two weeks we’ll be able to share what will be happening on this part of the campus next,” Haines said.

Haines also noted that First National has contributed to other projects for KBFPC in the past. “It’s been really nice that they have been able to come in and support some of the work we’re doing here in the community.”

This is the second grant First National has provided to KBFPC. In 2022, the bank donated funds to support KBFPC’s Hypertension Prevention Initiative, which enabled the purchase of blood pressure cuffs for a checkout program at the clinic. Clients can borrow the devices at no cost to monitor blood pressure at home and actively participate in their healthcare.

“They are also a part of the Mobile Mammograms program that we have slated for this summer,” Haines said. “We are working with a group of women in town helping us do some fundraising to host the Mobile Mammograms event and expand the options available for people in town. That was incredibly successful and First National has provided some funds to help with the marketing of those events.”

Haines said ending the successful after-school program has been difficult.

“Both myself and Tyler are actively involved in other community efforts to find more spaces for young people and after-school support,” Haines said.

She mentioned collaboration efforts from the Resiliency Coalition’s, the SPARC, the Center and Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies that are looking to see what the community solution might be. Tyler Moskios-Schlieman is the Peer Education Coordinator for KBFPC.

The Kachemak Bay Family Planning Clinic is a community-supported nonprofit organization that provides broad access to reproductive health care services and sexual health education. Visit www.kbfpc.org or call 907-235-3436 for further information.

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