Building a New Home for the Marjaree Mason Center
Operating from headquarters constructed in 1913 as a private home, the Marjaree Mason Center has been Fresno County’s only dedicated provider of domestic violence shelter and supportive services since opening in 1979. We’re proud to have helped thousands of women and families experience hope and healing through the years. But the ongoing need is far greater than our current footprint can accommodate.
To meet the growing needs in our community, the Marjaree Mason Center purchased a 5.5- acre property in Fresno with an existing 37,680 sq. ft. building. In its 60-year history, the building was home to several educational organizations including Heald College and The Milan Institute. Now, it’s in the process of being modernized to meet today’s building and operational standards.
A place of refuge and restoration that’s twice our current capacity.Take a Video Tour
The need: The Marjaree Mason Center has significantly outgrown our current headquarters and crisis drop-in center in downtown Fresno, originally built in 1913 as a private home. Given the National Historic Registry designation and no adjacent land, expansion in our current location is not possible.
The solution: The Community Resource Center will more than double the footprint for critical non-residential services including a dedicated Crisis Response Suite, Children’s Enrichment Center, Medical Exam Room, Counseling Center, 100-Person Training Center and more.
The need: Our services are currently spread across several locations, requiring transportation between sites. This not only creates barriers for survivors, but creates significant operational inefficiencies.
The solution: The Community Resource Center is located near the Blackstone corridor, FAX bus line 1 and Freeway 41, and will consolidate all Fresno Metro locations, making it easily accessible to both survivors and community partners. Operational efficiencies will be enhanced as we consolidate locations, and the shared-space design will allow survivors to engage care from law enforcement and other agencies in one place.
The need: Being on the National Historic Registry limits our ability to add enhanced safety doors and gates at our current location. There is also significant exposure to the public. While rich in history and architectural design, it is not functional for office or meeting space, confidential conversations or privacy in crisis response.
The solution: At our Community Resource Center, healing will begin the moment a person walks through the doors thanks to design, color and furnishing choices that consider their emotional safety. Additionally, the physical safety of survivors and care providers will be protected by security doors, fencing, cameras, confidential parking and more.
Marjaree Mason Center received a facility planning grant from the Living Legacy Foundation.
Darden Architects conducted a space needs analysis and recommended options for the Board’s consideration. Moss Adams conducted a financial analysis of those different options including 5-year operating projections.
The Board made a decision that a move was necessary and to proceed with a future consolidated campus with room to grow.
Over a dozen sites were explored for meeting our needs, price and required zoning. In December 2021, MMC entered into a Purchase Sale Agreement for the property (5.57 acres with a 37,680 sq. ft. building) at 255 W. Bullard Avenue in Fresno.
A donation from the Kashian Family Foundation allowed us to conduct due diligence on the site and create conceptual renderings.
The needed zoning was obtained to allow for all uses of the property.
MMC closed escrow on the property.
Other domestic violence agencies (Sacramento and Dallas) and social service sites were toured to gain ideas.
Paul Halajian Architects was retained for architectural services.
The general contractor was selected and brought on board.
Launch of public capital campaign.
Groundbreaking for the remodel/modernization.
Anticipated completion and move-in.
With the support of our Board of Directors and staff, the Marjaree Mason Center is committed to a $20 million fundraising campaign to build our new Community Resource Center. Thanks to the County of Fresno for committing $4.7 million in ARPA (federal) funds and the generosity of several lead gift donors, we’re off to a strong start.
Your donation is an investment in more than just a larger physical space. It is an investment in thousands of adults and children whose lives will be transformed as the Marjaree Mason Center empowers them to move from fear and abuse to safety and stability. It is an investment in strengthening our ability to provide the comfort, courage, hope, confidence, dignity and respect that all survivors deserve.
History has proven the success of the Marjaree Mason Center’s comprehensive services and program. Through the Community Resource Center, we will be able to support, empower, educate and advocate for many more survivors, offenders and children – each uniquely affected by domestic violence. With your help, we will move Fresno exponentially closer to ending the cycle of abuse.
When we ask the community for help, we want to make it as easy as possible – without needless limitations or barriers. So as we inch closer to meeting our $20 million goal, we gladly accept the following types of gifts:
Naming opportunities are available in the new Community Resource Center in honor of donations and pledges of $50,000 - $10,000,000. Additionally, a permanent donor wall will be featured in honor of all donations of $10,000 or more.
November 1-15, 2023
To help us reach our $20 million goal for the Community Resource Center, the Marjaree Mason Center invites local businesses and organizations to join the Community Partner Challenge!
During the Challenge (November 1-15, 2023), participating businesses and organizations commit to contribute $2,500 or more, either by donating directly or by raising funds through your customers, employees, vendors, etc. You can earn valuable perks for achieving higher donation levels, and could have a private meeting room in our new Center named after your business if you raise the most!Get Commitment Form
Join us today.Donate Here
For more information, contact Ashlee Wolf at firstname.lastname@example.org or 559-487-1313
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