Concerned about empty, neglected buildings in the eastern Montgomery County area, members of the Eastmont Community Foundation (formerly known as Mountain Valley Charitable Foundation) endeavored to purchase the defunct Meadowbrook Nursing Home in 2005. Because the were not able to reach an agreement with the owner, a new plan was devised. The community had long sought a library branch but the cost to the County of a freestanding building was prohibitive. So, a local development company purchased the Meadowbrook building, donated it to the County which in turn was able to renovate a portion into the Meadowbrook Public Library at a lower total cost. Then, in cooperation with the County, the Foundation coordinated a $2.5 million redevelopment of the remainder of the facility into The Meadowbrook Center. Today, in addition to the library, the Center features the Waldron Wellness Center, the Meadowbrook Museum, a community center with a commercial kitchen, and various meeting and rental office spaces. The Meadowbrook Center is located at 267 Allegheny Spring Road in Shawsville.
In 2011, the Foundation acquired the Old Elliston Fire House, a local landmark that was built by its volunteer members in 1957. The volunteer fire department had moved to a new facility in 2008, vacating the old station, leaving another abandoned building in the community. The Foundation began a renovation of the building that provided a new permanent home for the Shawsville Lay Ministerial Association's Food Pantry. Since its opening in 1999, the Pantry, which is staffed solely by volunteers, had many temporary homes. Now the Fire House offers it the opportunity to serve more than 150 local families in an established location.
The Old Elliston Fire House also provides renovated space for a Thrift Store operated by the Eastmont Community Foundation (formerly known as Mountain Valley Charitable Foundation). This store meshes well with the needs of eastern Montgomery County and accepts and sells gently used clothing, furniture, working appliances and other saleable items. It also accepts clean, dry plastic and paper bags. The Thrift Store and the Food Pantry are located at 1870 Big Spring Drive in Elliston. All proceeds stay local, and support the Foundation’s programs in the community.
In addition to operating the Meadowbrook Center and Old Elliston Firehouse, the Eastmont Community Foundation (formerly known as Mountain Valley Charitable Foundation) invests in the people of eastern Montgomery County through the donated funds it manages.
Each year, through the G.W and Dot King Scholarship Fund, it awards scholarships to deserving graduating seniors at Eastern Montgomery High School. In 2015 it awarded six such $1,000 scholarships.
The Foundation also awards annual grants. The Lorraine Ryan Educational Fund awards grants in support of education programs, projects and equipment that benefit school age children. The James E. Pearman, Sr., Legacy Fund supports programs and projects at Camp Alta Mons, Project LINC and The Meadowbrook Center. The Karen Cronin Legacy Fund supports local gardening, artistic and beautification programs. Through these Funds in 2016, the Foundation made available $4,784 to Eastern Montgomery County Elementary School for the purchase of eight IPads to be used by the students and teachers and $1,000 to the Meadowbrook Public Library for a bench in the reading garden in the Meadowbrook Courtyard.
The Eastmont Community Foundation (formerly known as Mountain Valley Charitable Foundation), which has as its sole mission to enhance the quality of life in eastern Montgomery County, Virginia, is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization that meets the qualifications of IRS Code 501 (c) (3). Contributions are deductible for federal income tax purposes. Donations can be made to Eastmont Community Foundation (formerly known as Mountain Valley Charitable Foundation), 267 Allegheny Spring Road, Shawsville, VA 24162, (540) 268-1623.