Army of help

Dust-covered hallways, and tarp-covered and drywall-bare walls are all a sign of the Leadership Connect class project to makeover a portion of The Salvation Army on Despelder Street.
Alex Doty
Mar 28, 2013


“I am really excited about the project that our class chose,” said Jeff Marcus, the principal of Robinson Elementary School in Robinson Township. “Our class felt strongly about choosing a group that had a strong impact on our community.”

The local Chamber of Commerce leadership class will increase the size of The Salvation Army building's lobby, renovate office space and make improvements to the food pantry area.

“Originally, the proposal was to rearrange furniture and repaint walls,” class member Ben Froese said. “But we thought we could do better than that.”

This past weekend, classmates demolished existing space inside the building, leaving behind wall studs, missing ceiling tiles and a promise for a fresh new look.

“A group of us went out there taking down walls, which was a great experience,” Marcus said. “We hired a contractor to do the actual work.”

Josh Brugger, whose Brugger House Builders company is also working on the project, said he was glad to be involved with the Leadership Connect initiative.

“By creating a safe and welcoming environment, the lobby renovation and food pantry expansions are going to help The Salvation Army take better care of those in need,” the builder said.

Brugger's business is no stranger to The Salvation Army.

“As a business, we’ve been supporting the local Salvation Army since 2008," Brugger said. "They have great accountability and really do the most good with the donations they receive. The Salvation Army is one of our company's matching donation program recipients.

"When Leadership Connect called, we didn’t hesitate to say yes," he added.

To read more of this story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.


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