Rebuilding for recovery


By Andrea Cordle
Westside Editor

A volunteer helps to rebuild the Desert Island Club, a drug and alcohol recovery center.
A volunteer helps to rebuild the Desert Island Club, a drug and alcohol recovery center.

The Desert Island Club is in the business of helping those in need. Now, the westside non-profit organization needs help from the community.

Since 1982, the Desert Island Club has been a recovery center.

“We help the addiction community,” said Kevin Phillips, co-chair of the club’s board. “We are one of the only ones on the westside.”

The club offers meeting space and resources for those recovering with drug or alcohol addiction. It used to hold more than 20 meetings each week.

All that changed in August of last year. Someone broke into the club and set a fire, rendering the building unusable. The organization had no insurance. According to Phillips, the fire resulted in about $50,000 to $75,000 in damage.

Late last year, the organization decided to set up a fundraiser to help rebuild the club. So far, many community members have stepped up to donate, but there is much more to do.

According to Phillips, about 25 people have donated time and labor to help the club rebuild. Workers have helped to rewire the club. They have put up the support structure wall and rebuilt the offices. Phillips said they still need to put up drywall, paint and do electrical work.

The Desert Island Club is trying to raise $20,000 to finish rebuilding. The club has set up a Go Fund Me page. For those who would like to donate, go to or mail or drop off a check at the Desert Island Club, located at 501 Josephine Ave., Columbus, Ohio 43204.

“Any support would greatly help,” said Phillips.

Phillips said he hopes to have the club up and running this summer.

The arson is still under investigation.

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