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Moab nonprofit receives first Spirit of Service award from Governor Cox

Members of the Moab Valley Multicultural Center with Governor Cox, holding the Spirit of Service award
Justin Higginbottom
Members of the Moab Valley Multicultural Center with Governor Cox, holding the Spirit of Service award

The Moab Valley Multicultural Center (MVMC) acts as a crisis resource center, cultural outreach institution, and the largest food bank in Grand county.

Rhiana Medina, the executive director of the MVMC, led Governor Cox on a tour of the Center on a busy street in downtown Moab.

“Our mission is broad enough that we're able to do what we do in immediate response to the greatest needs in the community at the time,” Medina said.

On top of its social services, the center also provides language interpretation and translation services for individuals, businesses, and organizations including law enforcement and certified medical interpretation.

While Medina says around 65% of the clients they serve are Spanish-speaking, they have been successful in reaching out to other parts of the community as well.

“We've worked hard to let the community know that this is a community center for everybody. We have cultural celebrations, we try to celebrate the diversity of our community,” Medina said.

Cox says serving rural communities, like those served by the MVMC, has been a priority for his administration.

“I know what it's like to live in rural Utah and I know the challenges that we face,” Cox said.

The Spirit of Service award highlights individuals and groups who are making a difference in their community through service. The MVMC was the first recipient of this award.

“What makes this place so special, it's that spirit of volunteerism and giving back. You are changing lives you are saving lives,” said Cox in his remarks before awarding the Spirit of Service to the MVMC.

Through its programs, Cox says the Center has become the glue of the community and he wishes the same spirit of service will be replicated across the state.

Anna grew up begging her mom to play music instead of public radio over the car stereo on the way to school. Now, she loves radio and the power of storytelling through sound. While she is happy to report on anything from dance concerts to laughter practice, her main focus at UPR is political reporting. She is studying Journalism and Political Science at Utah State University and wants to work in political communication after she graduates. In her free time, she spends time with her rescue dog Quigley and enjoys rock climbing.