First Step breaks grown for new building

| April 20, 2018

A ground breaking ceremony was held on April 20 for First Step’s new location. Pictured preparing to turn the first shovel full of dirt are: Mayor Steve Mercer, Senator Jay Hottinger, Jill Lahna, vice president of First Step’s board, State Representative Larry Householder, Vicki Laudick Casey, First Step’s executive director, and Coshocton County Commissioners Dane Shryock, Gary Fischer and Curtis Lee.

COSHOCTON – Thanks to the generous support of the community, First Step Family Violence Intervention Services, Inc. was able to break ground on its new building.

A ground breaking ceremony was held April 20 at the property, which sits behind the Coshocton County Board of Developmental Disabilities office on Chestnut Street and was donated by Coshocton Community Housing Inc.

“This would not be possible without the support of the community,” said Jill Lahna, vice president of First Step’s board. “Since 1992 First Step has not had a place to call its own. We are excited for this opportunity and for the community’s continued support of helping victims of domestic violence.”

Before shovels were picked up to turn the dirt, Senator Jay Hottinger presented First Step with a proclamation.

“One of the best days for elected officials is when you have a shovel (for a groundbreaking) or scissors in your hand (for a ribbon cutting),” he said. “It’s a great day when jobs and opportunities are created or you are helping agencies serve people.”

With the urging of Joy Padgett, Hottinger and State Representative Larry Householder worked together to secure $50,000 for First Step’s building project.

“It was the last of the money needed for the property to be fully funded,” Hottinger said. “God bless you for all the work you do and we wish you continued success.”

Vicki Laudick Casey, First Step’s executive director, thanked them and everyone else who made the project possible.

“This is a great opportunity and it would not have happened at all without the support of the community, “she said. “Thank you is so menial to what the emotion is. We are working to make our community a safer place for all from infants to age 99.”

Casey added that they are hoping to have the new building up and running by August.

“It will be a place for people to come to and us to serve them that is comfortable and safe,” she said.

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About the Author ()

I started my journalism career in 2002 with a daily newspaper chain. After various stops with them, I am happy to be back home! I graduated from Coshocton High School in 1998 and received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication in 2002 from Walsh University. I also earned several awards while working for daily papers, including being honored by Coshocton County’s veterans for the stories I wrote about them. I am honored and ready to once again shine a positive light on Coshocton County. I also am the proud mother of a little girl named Sophia!

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