Project Independence in Barre to close June 1

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RANDOLPH —Project Independence (PI), Gifford’s Adult Day program in Barre, will close permanently effective June 1, Gifford officials recently announced. 

The closure comes after several years of declining participation and unsustainable costs associated with operating the program.

PI has been temporarily closed since March 16 due to COVID-19.

“It is with great disappointment that we share the news of the difficult decision to permanently close Project Independence, our Adult Day program in downtown Barre,” said Gifford President and CEO Dan Bennett.

Bennett sais Gifford worked diligently to try to avoid this outcome by making significant investments to support PI since acquiring the program in 2014.

Three staff members at PI will be affected by the closure and have been offered other positions within Gifford.

“We value our team members at PI and hope they choose to remain a part of our team here at Gifford,” said Bennett.

PI’s average daily census before its temporary closure in March due to COVID-19, and for the last few years, was 16 participants.

The average daily census in 2014 was 38.

To sustain the program, Gifford supplemented it with additional funds and also made considerable investments in building repairs over the years.

Gifford plans to sell the building.