PITTSFIELD -- The new year is already shaping up to be a good one for Moments House, a support network for individuals -- and their families -- diagnosed with cancer.
The small nonprofit marked its third anniversary on Saturday while in the midst of a move into a larger space at 34 Depot St.
Prompted by demand, the move places the organization in a space three times larger than its prior location on Fenn Street. Co-founder Alice Trumbull said no one imagined such progress when Moments House first formed in 2011.
"Our goal was to within five years have raised enough money to open our own facility," she said on Friday. "That happened in a year and a half, now we're moving on to bigger and better. It tells us that there was a huge need that wasn't being met."
Moments House has touched about 1,500 lives since its founding, offering massage services, one-on-one talks with cancer survivors, nutrition classes, a free-lending library, yoga classes, wigs for people undergoing chemotherapy and much more. It is entirely run by volunteers and constantly in search of new faces to add to the 32 currently on the rolls.
Two parties aiding Moments House in the move include Patrick J. Muraca, president and CEO of Pittsfield's Nuclea Biotechnologies, and George Whaling, the landlord. Muraca has pledged the first year's rent and Whaling is providing the space below market value.
Trumbull said extra programming, private rooms and expanded library offerings are just some of the enhancements promised by the new space, which measures 2,750 square feet.
"We are, as always, focused on our mission and everything that comes along with it," she said.
Many of the Moments House volunteers, like Marlene Clemons, who's worked for the organization for two years, are themselves cancer survivors.
"You want to do whatever you can to help someone who's experiencing the disease," Clemons said. "Some people know how to make peace and go with it, but others don't know how to cope. Those people need to know this resource is here."
Volunteers helped out moving items during the week, but the space still requires full handicap accessibility before it can open. Trumbull said Moments House plans to request grant funds from the city to complete the task, and that the aim is to open within several weeks.
In the meanwhile, Trumbull said people can contact the organization through its Facebook page at facebook.com/momentshouse, or call (413) 443-6800.
To reach Phil Demers:
or (413) 281-2859.
On Twitter: @BE_PhilD