ONN-weblogoThe Sun City West Consortium, an organization comprised of 11 local organizations, has come together to form Our Neighbor Network, a one-stop resource for Sun City West residents seeking information about the community’s rich fabric of services.

Our Neighbor Network (ONN) will be unveiled at an open house,
9 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 14, in Palm Ridge Recreation Center, 13800 Deer Valley Drive. Area residents are encouraged to attend, enjoy refreshments and learn how ONN can help.

The Sun City West Consortium was formed in November 2013 to make it easier for residents, their friends, family and caregivers to access resources already available within the community and, in some cases, in Maricopa County. ONN, a community information referral service, is the first project of this unique cooperative effort.

“All of our agencies and organizations provide a wide range of resources already. If one of us doesn’t have the service that a client needs, we know where to direct them,” said Patti Rowan, president of the Sun City West Community Consortium and executive director of the Sun City West Foundation, one of the Consortium members.

“What we’ve discovered, however, is that our residents – or more often their caregivers,  friends or family members – are not very familiar with resources in the community. They may not know where to start, or they don’t research options until a need becomes critical.”

This common concern was voiced many times over the last several years by students in the Sun City West TORCH Citizens Academy, which spurred former TORCH Chair Pat Canfield and others to envision the Consortium.

“I knew there was a need, and I knew we had the talent within this community to fill it because the services are already here. We just needed to make it easier for people to find them,” said Canfield. “But I’ve been so impressed to see 11 local agencies coming together and volunteering their time and talents to create Our Neighbor Network. It’s been inspirational to watch it come together to meet a need that our own residents have voiced, and it will be a great asset to Sun City West.”

ONN offers three ways for people to find services: a website, a phone number (623) 832-4ONN (4666) and drop-in locations throughout Sun City West where trained volunteers will help them navigate the website, OurNeighborNetwork.org

Those who are not comfortable using the web can stop in at any of the five sites listed below during normal business hours and get help from an ONN-trained staff member.

  1. Recreation Centers of Sun City West’s Administrative Offices, 19803 N. R.H. Johnson Blvd., Sun City West
  2. Sun City West Foundation, 14465 R.H. Johnson Blvd., Sun City West
  3. Sun Health Center for Health & Wellbeing, 14719 W. Grand Ave., Surprise
  4. Benevilla, 16752 N. Greasewood St., Surprise
  5. Sun City West Fire District Headquarters, 18818 N. Spanish Garden Drive

Along with those represented in the sites above, the other Consortium members are the Posse, PORA, Community Fund, Northwest Valley Connect, TORCH and PRIDES.

The Consortium is making use of the member organizations’ existing staff and equipment in order to keep costs low. Future costs will be covered through fund raising to help expand awareness of the program. Additional information about the Consortium, ONN or donation opportunities is available by calling (623) 832-4666.

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