USDA awards $1M to Connections facility in Harrington

HARRINGTON – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced $1 million for a renovation expansion project at the Connections Community Support Programs, Inc. facility in Harrington that opened last fall.

Made through the Community Facilities Direct Loan Program, this year’s award will support expansion of their services and renovation of the facility to include more overnight beds, space for counseling services, commercial food services and administrative offices. The loan program supports essential community facilities and services that help with rural health care, public facilities, community support services, public safety, education, and local food systems.

“Most people probably wouldn’t think of USDA as the obvious choice for this role,” said USDA Rural Development State Director Bill McGowan. “But USDA is uniquely suited for the task, given our strong, longstanding relationship with rural America, where rates of overdose and opioid misuse are particularly high.”

Last year, USDA awarded a Community Facilities Direct Loan in the amount of $5,050,000 to Connections Community Support Program that supported the acquisition of the 23,500 square foot property that serves as a Withdrawal Management Center (WMC) providing a total of 16 overnight beds and room for up to 100 individuals to attend partial hospital treatment during the day for up to 30 days.

The property is known as Spartan Station, located at the corner of East and Clark Street in Harrington. Since its opening on November 9, 2015, the facility has been at full occupancy and there is a need for renovation expansion based on the growing addiction crisis in Kent and Sussex Counties.

The WMC is a registered Opioid Treatment Program (OTP) which means that it is approved by the State of Delaware and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to dispense methadone and buprenorphine, drugs which are used as a replacement therapy for heroin.

Since 2009, USDA Rural Development has invested $11 billion since 2009 to start or expand 103,000 rural businesses; help 1.1 million rural residents buy homes; fund nearly 7,000 community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care facilities; finance 185,000 miles of electric transmission and distribution lines; and help bring high-speed Internet access to nearly 6 million rural residents and businesses.

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