$6.4 million expansion to meet growing demand

On Tuesday Project Turnabout staff and board members were joined by community representatives of the city, county and churches to break ground on an estimated $6.4 million addition that will allow the organization to meet a growing need for its alcohol and drug prevention services. According to Project Turnabout board member and Building Chair, this will be third project undertaken at the facility, and by far the largest, exceeding the cost of the other two ventures combined. “That’s a good news and a bad news thing,” said Amundson of the project. “The bad news is we have to do it because of the need, the good news is that we’re in a position to do it and fulfills our need to serve Southwest Minnesota.” Project Turnabout has a gained recognition throughout the state, and increasingly nationwide, for offering high quality addiction recovery services at a marginal price. As the word has gotten out, it has translated to an increasing number of requests to check into the facility. Since mid-April of 2012 a total of 958 individuals seeking treatment had to be turned away. “In the last five years, besides receiving national accreditation, we have added so many quality features, from cutting the case load so there are fewer patients to counselors, to bringing in mental health staff and bolstering our nursing staff, that what has happened is that we can treat individuals with multiple needs,” said Project Turnabout Executive Director/CEO Mike Schiks. “And for the rate that we charge, which is one third to one fourth of a lot of the rates, for that kind of quality, it is what has brought us into the position where we are greatly in demand.” To help relieve the backlog, Project Turnabout will construct two additional buildings as well as renovate portions of the existing facility to create approximately 21,750 sq. feet of new space. The project architect is Engan Associates, of Willmar, while the general contractor for the project is Sussner Construction, of Marshall. From start to finish construction is expected to take 14-15 months to complete. The new building will be a 27 bed women's unit, while the old women's unit will be converted to a third 20 bed men’s treatment unit. Other components of the project will see the renovation of current administrative area to allow for the expansion of the existing detox unit by six beds, the renovation of lecture space to accommodate dining space and additional beds as well as the construction of a patient, family and professional educational center that will seat up to 240. In sum, the total of number of beds available will increase by 33, from 89 to 122. Broken down that's 20 additional men's beds, seven additional women's and six beds in the detox unit. The added beds also create a need for additional employees, and as a result of the project the number of Project Turnabout staff is expected to jump by 15 to 20 over the present tally of 112. According to Shiks, the secret to the organization's success is based on a philosophy that puts client needs above all else, which translates to low administrative costs and an unceasing organizational drive to ever improve. “Our commitment to quality and caring for people has led our organization, not some sort of business strategy,” he said. “That feels pretty darn good to me ... It’s why I’m here,: he continued. “It’s about that glimmer of hope in someone’s eyes.”