Selinsgrove woman nominated for her passion and hard work | News

Editor’s Note: The Daily Item will recognize this week the people who made a difference to the Valley in 2021. It’s the latest part of a series that began on Christmas Eve.

SELINSGROVE – Kelly Feiler just cares about the valley.

Feiler, president of the Regional Engagement Center (REC), is making a difference in the community through her hard work and dedication to serving children through after-school programs, as well as providing space for children’s programs. exercises for adults and for young people.

Kristen Moyer, director of community relations, SEDA-Council of Governments, Lewisburg, nominated Feiler for this year’s Make a Difference recognition, due to Feiler’s passion, she said.

“About five years ago, I first met Kelly while she was seeking funding from United Way for the Selinsgrove REC,” she said. “She was telling me about why she was looking for funding and I was like, ‘Wow, she’s passionate about creating something for the youth of the Selinsgrove area. There was no central place to go for young people in eastern Snyder County. His enthusiasm is contagious.

Moyer said she continues to watch Feiler take action to improve the valley.

“I have seen Kelly’s passion and enthusiasm creating a program and a living space for the youth of the Selinsgrove area to experience positive social opportunities, and she has created programs that cross the divide. generational, ”Moyer said.

“With Kelly’s guidance, they used a former 8th Street church to develop an atmosphere that reflects Kelly’s positive and upbeat personality. The Selinsgrove REC is booming, and they are running out of space and recently applied for a RACP grant to expand and purchase the Selinsgrove Inn to expand its program.

This growth is due to Feiler, Moyer said.

REC recently applied for a $ 2.5 million grant to purchase the Selinsgrove Inn and adjacent property for independent senior housing and intergenerational programs.

The center opened in 2017 at 429 8th St. in Selinsgrove and serves approximately 60 children per day in its after-school program, as well as space for adult exercise and youth programs, said Sarah Farbo, president. of the board of directors of the REC. directors.

Feiler said they had grown too tall for the building and during the COVID-19 pandemic she came up with the idea of ​​expanding the center’s reach to include the elderly.

“Our mission is to involve people of all ages,” said Feiler.

But for the 52-year-old Selinsgrove woman, making people smile is most important.

“I wanted to find a good, positive way to get kids to have good social behavior,” she said. “Not doing drugs, not antisocial behavior and giving these children an opportunity was a goal.”

Feiler said she decided to start the center during a “perfect storm of events.

“It all came together in 2015,” she said. “And now we have 60 kids a day and I couldn’t be happier.”

But giving Feiler all the credit is something she won’t accept.

“I am humbled by it all, and it makes me want to cry knowing that we are making a difference,” she said. “I couldn’t do any of this without the great people, volunteers, board members and staff around me. “

The center now has four full-time employees, she said.

“It’s just wonderful and I can’t wait to continue growing in 2022,” she said. “I can’t say enough about how humble and honored and proud I am of all that we accomplish as a team. “