By Bob Fowler
Roane State staff writer
A local nonprofit has once again been a good neighbor to Roane State Community College’s Loudon County students. The Good Neighbors Shoppe, located at 420 Leeper Parkway in Lenoir City, has for the second year in a row awarded a $5,000 gift to the Roane State Foundation.
The money will be used to help provide scholarships to students who are ineligible for Tennessee Promise grants. Economically disadvantaged Roane State students from Loudon County who are age 20 and older are the targeted beneficiaries.
“So many times we encounter non-traditional students who need money to start or complete their education,” said Susan Williams, director of the college’s Loudon County campus. “The Good Neighbors Shoppe was able to help us provide some assistance to that particular demographic, and we are very grateful.”
Since it was founded in 2002, the resale shop has donated more than $3.6 million to worthwhile organizations that serve Loudon County.
Last year, the Good Neighbors Shoppe gave more than $770,000 to 28 organizations, said Claire Donnelly, secretary for the nonprofit’s board of directors and the organization’s scholarship coordinator. She said the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting store closure for several weeks has reduced the nonprofit’s revenue stream this year.
“The Good Neighbors Shoppe founders were passionate about contributing to scholarships for adult students who want to continue their education,” Donnelly said. “In fact, it is a part of the shoppe’s Mission Statement.”
The Good Neighbors Shoppe Board of Directors each year determines how best to benefit Loudon County, and its goal is to return at least 82 percent of gross sales back to the community.
Roane State is a two-year college providing transfer programs, career-preparation programs and continuing education. Founded in 1971, the college has locations in Roane, Campbell, Cumberland, Fentress, Knox, Loudon, Morgan, and Scott counties as well as a branch campus in Oak Ridge. For more information, visit www.roanestate.edu or call (865) 882-4554.
Remember, eligible adults can now attend Roane State tuition-free with the new Reconnect grant. Learn more at www.roanestate.edu/reconnect.