Arrowleaf opens new community center in Anna

ANNA – Arrowleaf held a grand opening for a new community center Monday afternoon at 302 South St. in Anna.

Sherrie Crabb, CEO of Arrowleaf, talks about Anna’s new community center just before the grand opening to mark its opening on Monday afternoon.

Marilyn Halstead

Sherrie Crabb, CEO of Arrowleaf, said the building had been vacant for several years. Denuta Del Rio, grant program director at Arrowleaf, received a SAMHSA CMHC grant while she was executive director of Union County Counseling. This grant was used to renovate the building after Union County Counseling merged with Arrowleaf.

“It was an evolution,” Del Rio said. “It’s better and more viable.”


A display has been installed in the classroom of the new community center in honor of Bonnie Bradley, a longtime employee of Union County Counseling who died in August 2021.

Marilyn Halstead

The open house was dedicated to longtime employee of Union County Counseling, Bonnie Bradley.

Bradley first worked at the counseling center as a life skills teacher for five years. She decided to go to school to become a licensed practical nurse to better care for her clients.

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Her daughter, Sarah Brown, said she went to school while caring for two children, Brown and son Travis, and taking care of her cancer-stricken stepmother.

Bradley served Union County Counseling for 27 years. She contracted COVID-19. Her daughter, Sarah Brown, said she contracted COVID pneumonia and was on a ventilator for 12 days. She died on August 4, 2021.

Bradley’s husband Ray, daughter, son-in-law and grandchildren attended the open house, along with other family members.

Ray Bradley said he was very humbled and honored that Arrowleaf chose to recognize his wife at the open house. His wife has devoted “a great deal of her life” to her patients at Union County Counseling.


Bonnie Bradley’s family and colleagues shared memories of her Monday afternoon at the opening of a new community center in Anna.

Marilyn Halstead

“She would go out and make sure everyone was okay,” Ray Bradley said.

He said the stories his colleagues told about him going out to ensure drugs were in place or delivered were true. She rarely failed to phone to attend to patients.

He added that Bonnie Bradley had a disabled nephew and she helped take care of him. It kind of taught him to take care of others.

“If she only helped one person, it was worth the challenges. I’m honored they let me cut the ribbon to open the venue,” Ray Bradley said. “Bonnie has spent her entire life caring for others.”

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Crabb also gave Bradley’s co-workers the opportunity to talk about their memories of her.

“I loved Bonnie because she shared her own opinion. You knew how she felt because she told you,” Kenya Crouch said. “She even knew I was pregnant before I don’t tell anyone.”

She added that she wished Bradley was there to meet her son.

Del Rio said she would go home and tell her husband to guess what she learned from Bradley today.

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Her colleagues described her as very caring, sincere in her care and dedicated. She knew her clients, how they were doing, what tricks worked with them, and even what medications they were taking.

Crabb said she would have liked to meet Bradley.

A small exhibit dedicated to Bradley was in the classroom during the open house.

Crabb said the new community center will be used for group services for people with mental health diagnoses or symptoms.

Once a month, the center will be used for Rainbow Café On the Go, thanks to a partnership with Rainbow Café. They will provide a peer group for LGBTQ+ youth, their family and friends to receive non-judgmental support and access resources.

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The ground floor of the community center includes a large meeting room equipped with a lounge, tables and chairs and electronic devices for Zoom meetings or similar online meetings, as well as a small kitchenette and bathroom.

Services will be expanded to include groups for building healthy relationships, mental health wellness and mindfulness, developing wellness recovery action plans, grief and bereavement support and support for traumatic experiences.

The entire ground floor of the building may be rented outside Arrowleaf hours of operation by eligible departments and agencies. The fee will be a $100 donation.

Anyone interested in leasing the community center should contact Del Rio at 618-658-3079 or [email protected].

Jill E. Washington