Former Seahawk Doug Baldwin Jr.’s FFCC Foundation Partners with City of Renton, Renton School District, and HealthPoint to Open First of Its Kind Facility
RENTON, WA (JUNE 15, 2023) – Together with its partners, the Family First Community Center (FFCC) announces the grand opening of its 21,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility in Renton’s Benson Hill/ Cascade neighborhood. The Grand Opening will be celebrated with a community event on Friday, June 16, and will open its doors to the public on Monday, June 26.
The Center is a partnership between former Seattle Seahawk Doug Baldwin Jr.’s Family First Community Center Foundation, the City of Renton, the Renton School District, and HealthPoint, a network of non-profit community-based health centers.
First conceptualized in 2014, the Family First Community Center started as a vision from former Seahawk Doug Baldwin, Jr. The conversations that followed with Tom Trompeter, former CEO of HealthPoint, and former Renton mayor Denis Law in 2015 brought structure to the initial concept. The Renton School Board voted to lease the 17,000 square feet of land adjacent to Cascade Elementary School, and fundraising joined public and private dollars to complete the project, totaling just over $14 million. The initial groundbreaking occurred in 2019, with construction completed this year.
Of the opening, Baldwin says, “When I first came here in 2011, the community accepted me as one of their own. I got to know a group of teens that did homework at a restaurant called Mama’s Teriyaki, and that’s when my initial vision for the Family First Community Center started. Growing up in Florida, my local community center added so much to my childhood, and there wasn’t a resource like that here.”
“With my experience in sports, I realized to win a championship, it takes a lot of partners. From vision to execution this has been a journey of seven years, and I’m so proud of all our partners for the work it took to get here. The Family First Community Center provides a space where people can feel safe, welcomed, and seen. My hope is that it provides a model for other cities, not only across the state but around the country,” said Baldwin.
The first of its kind in Washington State, the Family First Community Center will feature a health clinic with medical, dental, and behavioral health services along with recreation, education, and wellness programming.
Programming will include after-school programs and classes; youth and adult sports; group exercise; personal training; financial literacy classes, health education, cooking, and nutrition classes; and activities for youth, adults, families, and seniors. Renton Public Schools will offer STEM classes to Cascade Elementary School students at the facility, and HealthPoint will provide medical, behavioral health, and dental care to area residents.
The combination of services in one location is designed to take a holistic approach to an individual’s wellness and provide support for people of all ages and backgrounds.
Of the unique approach, HealthPoint CEO Lisa Yohalem said, “At HealthPoint we’ve been serving the community for over 50 years and we know that good health is about much more than health care. That’s why we are excited to be part of a community hub that offers a variety of health and wellness services. Together, we can make Renton a healthier and more vibrant place to live.”
First annexed to the City of Renton in 2008, the Benson Hill/Cascade community has historically lacked resources and amenities and comprises approximately 25% of Renton’s population. Of that number, 10.9% live below the poverty line.
Nine schools are within a three-mile radius of the community center site, with a 10thschool opening this fall. With 4,300 students in close proximity, FFCC is designed to meet their needs as a recreational and wellness hub. In total, 56% of these students qualify for free or reduced lunch, and 24% are English Language learners. The center’s mission is to empower individuals and families to lead healthy, successful, and fulfilling lives through access to education, recreation, and support services.
The Family First Community Center will include educational programming including after-school tutoring, computer literacy classes, healthy cooking classes, and workshops on topics such as financial planning and parenting skills.
FFCC includes a gymnasium, fitness center, and outdoor play areas for sports recreation and fitness classes open during non-school hours, along with a full medical and dental clinic as well as mental health counseling to help individuals and families overcome challenges and achieve their goals. The center will also host regular community events to foster social connections and provide opportunities for togetherness.
“The opening of the Family First Community Center is a really incredible example of what can happen when agencies, local government, non-profits, and private donors come together to bring a vision to life,” said Renton’s Mayor, Armondo Pavone. “Opening the doors of the Family First Community Center providing a supportive and inclusive environment, we can help individuals and families in our community to thrive and reach their full potential.”
The grand opening event will take place on Friday, June 16 from 4:30- 7:30 PM at the Family First Community Center, located at 16200 116th Ave SE, Renton 98058. The event will feature a ribbon-cutting ceremony, self-guided tours of the facility, and a showcase of the programs and services available at the center. All community members are invited to attend and learn more about the opportunities and resources provided by the FFCC.
Capital campaign donors include the First Financial Northwest Foundation; Doug & Tara Baldwin; the MJ Murdock Charitable Trust; the Premera Social Impact fund; the Hearst Foundation; The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation; CarPros of Renton; the Norcliffe Foundation; the Rotary Club of Renton; Starbucks Coffee Company; and the Boeing Company.
Additional funding was provided by county, state, and federal grants secured through the work of U.S Representative Adam Smith (D-WA), State Representative Steve Bergquist (D-11th), State Senator Bob Hasegawa, State Representative David Hackney, King County Councilmember Dave Upthegrove, and King County Councilmember Reagan Dunn.
About Family First Community Center (FFCC)
The Family First Community Center (FFCC) is operated by Doug Baldwin Jr.’s Family First Community Center Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to fostering a thriving and inclusive community in Renton. Through a wide range of educational, recreational, and support services, the center aims to empower individuals and families to lead healthy, successful, and fulfilling lives. The FFCC is committed to promoting social connections, inclusivity, and a sense of belonging among Renton residents.