This week, the Community Loan Fund closed on a loan for $219,000 to purchase a home for respite care for families that include individuals with developmental disabilities. The term loan will help this 20+ year old organization purchase a 4-bedroom home adjacent to the their Battenkill Community Center for weekend getaways and excursions.

Battenkill Community Services has long offered a popular respite program, with participants taking special trips to local destinations, but COVID-19 has limited that service, limiting activity and travel options. The existing respite program has been “severely, negatively impacted by COVID-19 and has caused the disruption in services and the lack of available alternatives,” says Mark Flory, Executive Director for Battenkill Community Services. The new building will offer a standing destination for participants to go.

The house has the added benefit of being within walkable distance to Greenwich and in the midst of a community that most clients are familiar with.

When COVID has passed, the house will be available for rent to individuals with special needs, which is something in high demand in New York State.

β€œThe need for housing exceeds the capacity of New York state, this is a solution to the capacity problem and will allow the individuals to live in the communities that they know and serve,” says Flory. It is the intention of BCS to use this as a model for future housing projects.”

Founded in 1999, Battenkill Community Services, Inc. serves people with developmental disabilities and their families living in Albany, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Warren and Washington Counties.

BCS is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that assists people with developmental disabilities to obtain a better standard of living than they might otherwise expect. BCS empowers these individuals to experience and pursue meaningful activities within their own communities, to learn the skills and get the support necessary to pursue their interest and aspirations, and to become more independent. The organization also works to promote community awareness, understanding, and acceptance of people with developmental disabilities.

BCS is a returning borrower, with two previous loans with the Community Loan Fund; one loan was to expand their kitchen to offer culinary-based activities, and the other was to purchase two vehicles to transport individuals with special needs.

“BCS is one of the smallest providers for Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities services in New York state,” says Flory. “The partnership we have with the Community Loan Fund of the Capital Region has allowed us to create new and innovative programs and services, which is one of the key components to our success.”