Riverview Hope Campus Announces Construction Start Date


Hope Campus Groundbreaking

River Hope Campus breaks ground on new construction

Fort Smith, Ark. — Construction on the building that will house the Riverview Hope Campus will begin Thursday, October 6, 2016. After many years of preparation, this center for non-profit organizations will be officially underway.  The project, started by the Old Fort Homeless Coalition, is set to be completed in time for a fall 2017 opening.

Deacon Greg Pair, president of the Riverview Hope Campus board, said he is excited to see this dream become a reality.

“This is a new beginning for the low income and homeless in our area,” he said. “We look forward to working with our community in an effort to make a difference and believe the community will support our mission.”

The goals of the Hope Campus focus on efficiency and recovery. While food and temporary housing will be made available, the overall goal is to bring together a network of regional partners to help transform the lives of impoverished individuals in the area.

“The campus will provide a space to assist those in our community who are in need,” Secretary of the Board Margaret Tanner said. “By bringing other caring organizations together, we can offer comprehensive services, and thereby strengthen the community as a whole.”

By addressing issues such as hunger, mental and physical health and below-average work skills in one location, individuals who are in need of services can be served more efficiently. This model has been implemented in areas such as Dallas, Texas, and has been shown to produce many short and long-term benefits for the community.

“The Campus will show a community-wide effort in bringing service organizations together,” Treasurer Shanita Christian said. “It will assist in providing this sector of our population hope when they are at their most vulnerable.”

Immediate value will come from the ability to reduce duplication of services offered in the area. Long-term, the campus model will work to address the root causes of poverty and help individuals seek a path to self-sufficiency.

“Although one of the goals of the Hope Campus is to end homelessness through prevention as well as remediation, we feel we have a fiscal responsibility to the philanthropic community as well,” Jeremy May, vice president, said. “By providing a place to consolidate the services of existing non-profits and charities, we will be able to provide more than just the acute needs of food or shelter. We’ll be able to identify the root cause of each individual’s need, which is what we ultimately aim to address.”

The executive board consists of: President Greg Pair, Deacon at Immaculate Conception Church; Vice-President Jeremy May, lead analyst in the Marketing and Strategy division of ArcBest Corporation; Treasurer Shanita Christian, CFO of Griffin Properties; Secretary Margaret Tanner, provost for academic affairs and the director of graduate studies at UAFS.  Members are David Saxton, Kathryn Stocks Lewis, Bryan Peters, Doug Brooks, Jon Hendrickson, John McIntosh, Mitchell Minnick, Sam Fiori and Martin Schreiber. Rick Griffin serves as advisor to the board.

For more information about the Riverview Hope Campus, or for inquiries about photo opportunities, please email info@riverviewhopecampus.org.

Press contact:

479-782-4991 ext. 36




Riverview Hope Campus is a project of the Old Fort Homeless Coalition that will use a network of regional partners to provide comprehensive services to impoverished individuals and families in the River Valley.  Hope Campus will address acute needs as well as help individuals identify root causes of the challenges they face so that these individuals can pursue a path to self-sufficiency.