By Micah Davis
Utah”s Olympic experience will leave a legacy, not just for spectators who witnessed events, but also for Utah families and individuals in need.
SLOC will be donating an estimated $4 million in leftover items ranging from mattresses and linens to refrigerators and washers to non-profit organizations, which will then be distributed to various charities, needy families and individuals.
Fraser Bullock, chief operating officer for SLOC, said the donations are a result of a financially successful Olympics, and success can now be returned to the community.
“We are thrilled to be able to give back to the community in this way,” Bullock said in a news release. “This is one more way SLOC can contribute to the post-Olympic legacy.”
The donations will be distributed following a needs assessment of submitted requests. Three primary local non-profit organizations – Eagle Ranch Ministries, Salt Lake Community Action Program and Utah Non-Profit Housing Corporation – will then oversee the distribution to recipients.
Donations are expected to benefit more than a thousand people statewide said Marion Willey, executive director for Utah Non-Profit Housing Corporation.
“A wide range of people will benefit,” said Willey, emphasizing the large need for such items currently statewide.
“I don”t think anything like this has happened before. Everyone in their lifetime has needed something, and the people we work with deal with that all the time,” Willey said.
“There is a senior lady who has been sleeping on a chair for years. We have kids that have been sleeping on floors and now they”ll have mattresses,” he said.
Willey said he had thought about the items being available after the Games, but did not expect SLOC”s proposal of receiving the items at no cost with courtesy distribution included.
The items to be donated will remain in a warehouse, courtesy of SLOC. After the assessment, SLOC employees will then distribute the items to each location.
Before distribution and assessment occurs, non-profit organizations that serve low-income families and individuals can still submit requests to SLOC through April 17.
Distribution of the items is expected to occur toward the end of April. Willey said he believes the items will not last long and should be fully distributed within a two-week period.
Jenny Dudley, a Utah Non-Profit Housing Corporation committee member, said she sees the definite need and benefit that will arise from the gifts.
“I think the donations are wonderful since it is my job to work with those in need on a daily basis. It leaves a legacy for the Games in Salt Lake,” Dudley said.
For information on receiving and submitting an application, call 1-800-212-2444.