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Westhab Looking For More Space In Mount Vernon

MOUNT VERNON, N.Y. – Westhab is looking to expand its offerings in Mount Vernon by adding to its current building at 49 E. 3rd St. or adding a second location.

Westhab program developer John Parssinen said the building currently houses a youth center as well as an employment services office, and that, for the employment service office to work more effectively, it needs its own space.

“It would help us expand our ability to serve a greater number of participants,” Parssinen said. “The employment center can leave the current building and we’d be able to add several more classrooms for the youth center. Space is very important when it comes to running our programs.”

Parssinen said that it would cost between $200,000 and $300,000 to expand the current building, adding that there are potential private donors lined up and that Westhab, a non-profit, 501 (c) 3 organization, is exploring all possibilities to raise the money.

“It totally depends on what’s available at the time,” Parssinen said.

Parssinen said that all the space at the current building is being used. The building also has apartments above it, but Parssinen said residents use a separate entrance from the one to the youth center.

Currently, Westhab schedules employment services during the day, while the teenagers usually come in around 6 p.m.

“We have more space to work with at night,” Parssinen said. “Sometimes the two programs will go on at the same time, but there is not a lot of conflict. Employment services understands that if they were to work night hours, it probably wouldn’t work.”

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