Members of The Villagers recently presented a check to the Coral Gables Woman’s Club (CGWC) for renovations to their historically significant building. The $10,000 grant funded restoration work of the entrance as well as lighting. As a strict fiscal policy, The Villagers present funds when designated projects are complete.
The building was the first Works Progress Administration (WPA) project in Coral Gables. Completed in 1939, of local oolitic limestone it is one of the few remaining Florida examples of Depression-era Moderne style. Since the building’s ’39 completion, the Woman’s Club has helped more than 40,000 children in need through the Coral Gables Children’s Dental Clinic housed on-site. It also served as the first permanent library in Coral Gables. The site received designation from the National Register of Historic Places in 1990, and has space to generate funds supporting the Dental Clinic and other community projects through hosting special events.
The Villagers Inc. is Miami-Dade County’s oldest historic preservation organization, founded in 1966. The not-for-profit all-volunteer group, originally formed to save Coral Gables’ Douglas Entrance, has assisted locally endangered sites with 170 grants. Scholarships are also awarded annually to university students studying historic preservation. Through educating, advocating, fundraising, restoration, and documentation The Villagers continue a 55-year tradition of service for the preservation of local historic sites.