Work continues on a new 28,000-square-foot campus for Connections Individual and Family Services with an estimated completion of the first phase in August—roughly four years after the land was purchased for the expansion.

The backstory

CIFS was founded in 1981 in New Braunfels to provide safe and secure housing for at-risk youth and those experiencing homelessness. It has since expanded to offer services in more than 17 counties throughout the state.

In addition, the organization offers counseling services, substance abuse prevention services, an emergency shelter and a transitional living program. The campus is in a building that is more than 100 years old, said Paula Bouloubasis, community relations coordinator for CIFS, in an email to Community Impact.

In July 2020, CIFS partnered with the McKenna Foundation, which provided a $555,555 grant to purchase three properties adjacent to its 1414 W. San Antonio St. headquarters. The McKenna Foundation is a nonprofit that supports other community organizations throughout New Braunfels through grants and other resources.

Connections has since secured a total of $5.9 million in committed funding. Bouloubasis said the projected budget will total around $8.5 million, and the goal is to complete both project phases by July 2025 without incurring any debt.

The framework

A new children’s shelter and transitional living program comprise Phase 1. That is expected to be completed by August. Phase 2 will consist of a new counseling center, substance abuse prevention program and administrative offices with a goal to wrap up by July 2025, Bouloubasis said.

Phase 2 will require the demolition of the existing headquarters.

“We will temporarily relocate our counseling program, substance abuse prevention staff and administrative staff to [the Phase 1] space until Phase 2 completion,” Bouloubasis said.