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Greenville Business Magazine

Project HOPE Foundation Announces Location Of New Campus In Landrum

Project HOPE Foundation, a nonprofit organization offering a lifespan of services to the autism community, plans to open its seventh campus this fall, thanks to a gift from some extremely generous donors. Co-Founders and Co-Executive Directors Susan Sachs and Lisa Lane made the official announcement at the organization’s annual Evening of HOPE Gala on Saturday.

Project HOPE Foundation had been renting space at Advent United Methodist Church before moving to another temporary location at Temple of Israel in 2017. “The original plan was to build a new facility on a plot of land in Mauldin that would become our permanent home,” says Lane. “The cost of that project quickly grew from $2-3 million to upwards of $8 million, so our search for a permanent home continued.”

Board Chair Joe Vaughn discovered a friend of his was planning to purchase some property in Landrum as an investment. “It was the site of a former private school, so it already had three buildings full of classrooms designed to serve preschool through high school, along with a cafeteria and a gymnasium,” says Vaughn. “I knew it would be the perfect home for HOPE.”

Tab and Lauren Patton bought the land and decided to make a gift of the entire property, granting Project HOPE Foundation full use of the school and the 30 acres it sits on. The new facility will become the permanent home for Hope Academy and Bridging the Gap classes, which are currently housed in Greenville and Woodruff. The move will also provide room to expand the Hope Alive Junior and Hope Alive programs at HOPE’s Woodruff campus. “We are so incredibly grateful to the Pattons for this generous gift, which makes it possible for us to move into real school space - quickly, and without debt - and still leaves us plenty of room to grow,” says Sachs.

Greenville County will require more than $500,000 in upfitting and renovations to meet its standards, and Project HOPE Foundation will need to acquire additional buses to transport students. “There is a lot of work to be done,” said Sachs, “but we plan to be ready to open the Landrum campus by September.”

Project HOPE Foundation raised just over $1 million at its annual Evening of HOPE Gala. “We are thankful for every dollar donated,” says Lane. “Most of that money will be used to cover our costs for providing school and therapy services and the shortfall in reimbursement rates. We also have several folks who’ll be making in-kind donations to help us complete the work that needs to be done in Landrum.”