Ambulance expansion should be done by February Legion and VFW donate $50,000
TOM ARNOLD Record Express Correspondent
, Staff Writer
If everything goes as planned, by early 2014, the Warwick Community Ambulance Association will be in its newly renovated facility.
The property, located at 150 North Lane in Lititz, is being expanded to a two-story structure that will have three bays on the first floor, and create more administrative space on the second floor, allowing all the day-to-day operations of the WCAA to be at one location.
Additionally, the parking lot will be resurfaced and lined, and landscaped to make the area more attractive.
"This has been a long time coming," said Frank Kenavan, president of WCAA since 2009. "We need to put all the equipment under one roof. We recently purchased a new ambulance and, with that addition, one or sometimes two of our vehicles had to be parked outside."
The normal call volume for WCAA has been steady at about 4,500 to 4,600 calls per year.
"It has been holding steady since 2009 when I took over," said Kenavan. "We have been seeing an increase of 50 to 100 calls per year, so it has become imperative to keep our equipment working properly and to have everything under one roof."
The Association handles internal facility transports, which means transporting a patient between medical facilities. They also do wheelchair and invalid transports, and first responder calls. They employ a staff of 28 paid employees and are supplemented by eight volunteers.
The cost of the expansion is close to $500,000, most of which Kenavan hopes to raise through donations from residents and businesses.
"We are going to do a mailing campaign through the public, and also I recently began soliciting donations from local businesses," said Kenavan. "So far, I would like to thank the Lititz VFW and the American Legion. When I went to them and they both immediately agreed to donate 25,000, each."
The expansion began in early November, and Kenavan said he hopes to have the project completed by early February 2014.
"If things go as planned, we hope to be able to have the apparatus under roof by January and then the entire project finished by early February," he said.
The property was originally purchased in 1957, and the original garage erected in 1958. Then in 1960, WCAA purchased its first ambulance, a 1960 Cadillac, for $14,000, which was fully paid for by 1962. Since then the building was renovated two times, first in 1979 and then again in 1986.
Kenavan added, "We started in the alley and we really wanted to stay in the same place; there is a lot of history at this location. That’s why we decided to renovate instead of building at a different location."
Kenavan suggested several reasons for residents to donate to their cause. "We are exclusively a non-profit organization with charitable purposes that provide rescue and emergency medical services to the Warwick School District and surrounding areas."
They also provide emergency care services to all persons requiring such care regardless of their ability to pay.
Kenavan also reminds the citizens, "We take the burden off local government by providing services and emergency medical services in conjunction with and in addition to other available community health, rescue and community services."
More WARWICK AMBULANCE, page A17