Cow Creek Tribe donates $250K for new Grants Pass library

GRANTS PASS, Ore.- The Cow Creek Band Umpqua Tribe of Indians donates to three Josephine County projects, including $250k for a new Grants Pass library.

On February 19th, the Cow Creek Tribe was in Grants Pass to present and celebrate the $250k contribution with community members. Executive Director of the Josephine Community Library Foundation, Rebecca Stoltz, says this funding will be huge for the downtown area.

“This donation is an investment in a 21st century library for everyone in Josephine County and we’re extremely grateful,” Stoltz said.

Last year, the Josephine Community Library Foundation bought an entire block in downtown Grants Pass to act as the future home of the library. Before the Cow Creek Tribe made a contribution, the community had successfully raised close to $2 million for the project. Umpqua Tribe of Indians Tribal Chairman Carla Keene says projects like these are what the tribe is all about.

“It is lifting up people in this community and serving this community the best that the tribe can by helping with groundbreaking projects,” Keene said.

The tribe has committed to supporting the Grants Pass branch building project with $50k payments over the course of the next 5 years.

But the library project isn’t the only one the tribe is helping. The Josephine County Children’s Advocacy Center and Home Bridging were also supported during the celebration.

“All three are wonderful programs,” Keene said.

Keene says Home Bridging is building homes in Grants Pass for those who need them most. According to the county’s website, the Josephine County’s Children Advocacy Center serves to help victims of child abuse.

“They help families and children. I mean, what more can we do to help families like that?” Keene said.

Keene says they’re more than happy to help projects like these in Josephine County, along with the 6 other counties in their service area. She says whether a person is a tribal member or not, everyone has a place in the tribe.

“The tribe is community, and the community is a part of the tribe,” Keene said, “So, you know, that’s our philosophy, is if we help community and the community helps the tribe, we all come out winners and we all grow and have a better future”.

The site of the future Grants Pass library branch will be located between 6th and 7th Streets and J and K Streets. The Josephine Community Library Foundation believes the new building will be a place where all can come to learn, work and play, with spaces where local organizations and groups can connect.

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NBC5 News Reporter Lauren Pretto grew up in Livermore, California and attended University of California, Santa Cruz, graduating with a double major in Film/Digital Media and Literature with a concentration in Creative Writing. Lauren is a lover of books, especially Agatha Christie and Gothic novels. When her nose isn't buried in a book, she knits, bakes, and writes.
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