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The Lufkin News

Planned Parenthood shares facility plans

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Posted: Wednesday, December 20, 2006 12:00 am

The new facility is the culmination of a successful 3 1/2-month capital campaign under the guidance of longtime advocates, including Jean and David Dolben and honorary co-chairs Joan Duncan and Ellen Temple, the release stated. A generous lead donation and property gift from the T.L.L. Temple Foundation jump-started the effort which was capped off by widespread community support, including that of many local prominent leaders. The contribution amount was not immediately disclosed, but will be available on the foundation's annual statement. Buddy Temple, chairman of the board of the Temple Foundation, cited the foundation's long history with Planned Parenthood as one of the reasons for the gift. "We were involved in the funding of their current building," he said. "The trustees are supportive of Planned Parenthood because they are the primary source of reproductive health care of many women who would otherwise not have access to it." Michelle Green, Lufkin community services director of Planned Parenthood of Houston and Southeast Texas, was thrilled with the campaign's success. "Once we received the Temple Foundation's lead gift, the community rallied around us, eager to be involved. We realize that this could not have been possible without the generosity of our friends and neighbors, and we are truly honored by the level of support we've received," Green said. Ellen Temple said the success of the campaign is an example of the generous spirit of East Texans to help those most in need. "It was a rewarding experience to know that the funds raised will benefit the many families in our community. Dolben said leading the campaign with his wife Jean - who worked at Planned Parenthood on the east coast before their move to Lufkin in 1974 - has been an incredible experience. "(Jean) was anxious to continue the work and was instrumental in bringing Planned Parenthood to Lufkin almost 30 years ago," he said. "We jumped at the opportunity to lead this campaign together as there is no organization more committed to providing reproductive health care or preventing unintended pregnancies than Planned Parenthood." The new clinic will be located on Shands Drive, near the Angelina County & Cities Health District. At 6,700 square feet, the facility will provide five exam rooms, more office space, a larger waiting room, volunteer workstations and adequate parking as well as a training/community education room to meet the growing needs of the community, said Green. Green says there are no plans to perform abortions in the new facility. Moore Building Associates will begin construction soon, with completion slated for fall of 2007. The clinic opened its Frank Street location in 1977 to provide East Texas clients with basic health care services like annual exams. family planning information and birth control supplies. Since then, the number of patient visits has grown 500 percent, from 1,100 visits in 1977 to more than 7,000 in 2005, the press release stated. The building will revert ownership to the Junior League of Lufkin once Planned Parenthood vacates. Green says that while Planned Parenthood is thankful for their current facility, they have simply outgrown it. "One of our most important priorities is to maintain the high quality services we provide to men and women in our community and expand to serve their growing needs, Green said. "This commitment to the people of Lufkin and East Texas is something we share with our generous supporters." For more information about the capital campaign call 634-8446 ext. 231. This architect's rendering showshe new $1.5 million dollar Planned Parenthood facility that is scheduled to be completed in the fall of 2007. The new building will be located on Shands Drive, near the Angelina County & Cities Health District. Contributed photo

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