EMA Logo Eastside Ministerial Alliance, Inc.
EMA Building   History of the EMA
In 1975, the EMA began with a vision of working to help meet human needs and alleviating social and economic ills. In 1995, the EMA started hosting a series of Community Summits, the purpose of which was to gather together leadership from the Federal, State and Local levels for the purpose of community development on the east side of Waterloo. EMA Building Co-incidentally the Alliance was given abandoned buildings, located at the corner of East Fourth and Adams Streets. One direct result of the Summit Meetings was that the EMA began to look at ways in which it could utilize the donated property to provide opportunities and hope for people in the area.

The EMA conducted a strategic planning process in an attempt to implement its Mission Statement and to determine the best use of the property. The decision was made to construct a new building a the location in which the community services could be offered. As a result, a partnership with Tri-County Head Start emerged. Head Start secured a $267,000 Federal grant to help jump start the project. The City of Waterloo was approached in 1996 with a request to assist in the demolition of the abandoned and dilapidated buildings which had become a haven for drug activity and other crimes. The EMA successfully applied for CDBG Funds to assist with various aspects of the project.

Nonetheless, there were still significant hurdles to clearing title, as well as the additional challenge of purchasing the house adjacent to the donated property. However, with the assurance of space usage and financial support by Head Start and the knowledge that the City was firmly committed to ensuring development of the site, the dilapidated buildings were finally demolished and construction plans were undertaken.

EMA began its internal Capital Fund Drive in June 2001. The Capital Campaign Committee was established in January 2002. Ground Breaking took place on September 17, 2002. Head Start moved its offices into the completed Center on August 11, 2003 and EMA began its operations at the end of that month.