FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Bridge of Grace has raised two thirds of its goal for a project called “Hope Unleashed.”

Ten million of the $15 million goal Bridge of Grace is aiming for has been raised.

The money is for their HOPE (Housing, Opportunity, Progress, and Education.) Unleashed program that they hope will end the cycle of poverty in the southeastern part of Fort Wayne.

We want to make sure people have opportunities in our community that they didn’t have before.

Javier Mondragon, Bridge of Grace Founder/CEO

Much of the money raised will be focused on building a new multi-faceted building.

“We believe the hope already exists, the people in our community already have everything they need to address the systemic problems in our neighborhood, we just need to unleash it,” said Kelli Packnett, the early childhood development director at Bridge of Grace.

It’ll function as a center for early childhood education, something Packnett is thrilled about.

“It’ll be a great beacon of light into our community.”

Kelli Packnett, Bridge of Grace Early Childhood Development Director

The facility will serve about 200 kids every day, but Packnett says that there are 1,600 kids who need care just within their zip code. She says that the money will also enable them to take active steps to support other care providers in the community, including parents.

We’ll be really active in the community making sure that children are ready for development in school.

Kelli Packnett

The building itself will wear a number of hats as Bridge of Grace says it will also function as a clinic, community center, and have office space for its employees, and to teach entrepreneurship skills.

Bridge of Grace hopes to break ground on the building that will be right next to its current location in September of this year.

But the money will cover more than the facility.

“It’s a comprehensive plan,” said Javier Mondragon the founder and CEO of Bridge of Grace Ministries.

“That’s why it’s called hope, it’s more than the facility. It includes housing and economic opportunity, including a park.”

Javier Mondragon

Brewer Park at the corner of Pettit and Weisser Park Avenues sits firmly in the crosshairs of Mondragon.

There is a massive plan that costs 2.4 million dollars.

Javier Mondragon

While Mondragon is excited about the prospect of the park, there is no timetable on if or when anything will happen with it, as it’s owned by the city. Mondragon, in an effort to encourage the city to move on its 2.4 million dollar plan, says that Bridge of Grace has raised and will put up $500,000 of the cost.

You can keep up to date with all of their efforts in Southeast Fort Wayne or donate on their website.

Ultimately Mondragon says that he’s proud of the people in his community who are actively working to make changes. He says that he wants to build Southeast Fort Wayne into a thriving community, simply saying “bring it back to what it was before.”