Therapy pool set to make a splash in local community

SALISBURY, Md. – For years, the Holly Center, a facility for the developmentally disabled, has faced financial struggles that have made it hard for them to keep certain services available.

At one point, the Center was at risk of closing, but thanks to the State’s plan to “re-imagine” the Holly Center, it’s been able to stay open, and on Wednesday, one very important resource was reintroduced, the therapy pool.

Years ago, the therapy pool at the Holly Center encountered serious mechanical issues and was forced to close down as a result.

Dr. Katherine L. R. Jones, the Executive Director for Bay Area Center for Independent Living said, “It’s my understanding that it was due to financial constraints.”

The closure left the community devastated.

Dr. Jones said, “The pool was the heartbeat of the Center, and it’s part of the heartbeat of our community.”

A little over a year ago, Maryland’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene released plans to “re-imagine” the Holly Center. The day after that announcement, Dr. Jones decided to get involved by getting the pool reopened.

Dr. Jones said, “Bay Area CIL is very fortunate. The Rural Maryland Council actually granted us $60,000 towards the operations of this pool and the other money we’ve been raising as a Center over the past year and a half to keep it sustainable for the first year.”

On Wednesday, Bob Freeman’s son, who has autism, was the one to cut the ribbon and the first to swim in the pool. It was a special moment for the Freeman family, as their son loved the pool when he was young.

Bob Freeman said, “My son has been swimming in this pool since he was probably four or five years.”

Bob Freeman told us he believes this therapy pool will not only better the life of his son, but it will be making a splash with others in the community as well.

Freeman said, “Families siblings cousins can all come have a good time be themselves a great form of exercise a great form of therapy.”

The temperatures of this pool are between 88 and 94 degrees, so swimming in the pool can be a therapeutic form of exercise for anyone with arthritis or other disabilities.

We’re told members from the Bay Area Center for Independent Living will be able to use the pool, along with their caretakers and families.

As for when the pool will be opened up to the public, that date has yet to be released, but we will update this article when that information is available.

Categories: Local News, Maryland