It's been a year since Amado received five inches of rain in less than 90 minutes, causing several businesses and the Amado Youth Center to flood.

Since the storm on Sept. 2, 2018, the youth center has continued serving more than 100 kids off-site with the help of the Borderland Unitarian Universalist congregation, the Amado Universal Apostolic Church of Jesus Christ, the Sonoran Center for Spiritual Living and Sopori Elementary.

On Tuesday, Amy Bass and Tony Bruno, from PPEP, the non-profit organization that oversees the youth programs, announced they have raised nearly have of the $410,000 needed to build a new center.

The plan is to build a 2,400-square-foot facility at Kay Stupy-Sopori Neighborhood Park on land being provided through an agreement between Pima County, the Sahuarita Unified School District and PPEP.

The center has received a $30,000 grant from the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona to install a healthy food kitchen as part of the construction of the new center. In addition, $59,000 has been raised from local donors and the fundraising efforts of the Annual Amado Chili Cook-off Randy and Rose Estes Classic Car and Motorcycle Show.

Additionally, $120,000 has been committed by Pima County for a total of $209,000. PPEP has also applied for a USDA grant for additional funding.

“The next push for the remaining amount will require funds raised from individuals and this year’s Amado Chili Cook-off on Saturday, Nov. 16, at the Amado Territory,” Bruno said.

The Amado Youth Center has been offering after-school life skills building courses, youth substance abuse prevention and resiliency programs since 2011.

Individuals who would like to donate or seek further information can contact the Pima County Community Prevention Coalition at 520-205-4781, or mail donation checks to the Pima County Community Prevention Coalition, 1200 East Ajo Way, Suite 101, Tucson, Arizona, 85713. Please make the check payable to PPEP, Inc., and add Amado Youth Center Building Fund in the memo line of the check.

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