New health and wellness center to open in Mendota

The Alliance for Medical Outreach and Relief - or AMOR - broke ground on Thursday on their new health and wellness center in Mendota.

They say their goal is to lift up locals, not in one town but every community in west Fresno County.

"AMOR" is a community-based non-profit. Its executive director, Davena Witcher, says the center aims to be a one-stop shop, catering to the needs of the community.

"(Needs) such as medical care, behavioral health services, education services, social services, food security, quite a few organizations all working out of one place."

This will be the second project AMOR has done to improve the lives of those living in impoverished communities.

They saw success with their international project in Kabul, Afghanistan.

When the organization was deciding on the location for the next wellness center, Witcher says she wanted to help people at home.

She says their work goes beyond just Mendota.

"When we did our homework, you can draw a 15-mile radius around Mendota and you pick up so many other small towns that the actual documented population is right around 35,000 people believe it or not."

AMOR board members say there are numerous ways the new center will benefit the community, like shortening the distance to services in times of an emergency.

"They can't get transportation 30 miles away in Fresno, so when things might come up and they need care, saying Fresno is like saying San Francisco," says AMOR board member Dr. Kathryn Catania.

The goal is for the center to be complete and ready to help as early as fall of next year.

"We all need to come together, put our little pieces of the puzzle together, work hard and lift these communities up," says Witcher.

A place to help everyone in need, near and far.
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