A nonprofit group has opened a new community center in Newark.

Delaware Regional Dream Center officials and volunteers are already providing backpacks and boxes of snacks to students at five schools in the Red Clay and Christina school districts.

The group rents a 2,700 square meter facility that will be used as a warehouse and office space. It also received a donation of 35 pallets of non-perishable food from the Sacramento Convoy of Hope, a nonprofit.

The founder and CEO of the Delaware Regional Dream Center, Rev. Chris Dito, is also the senior pastor of the Parkview Assembly of God Church. He says his community members were already involved in community work when he decided to launch a 501c3 modeled on the national “dream center” with locations across the country.

“We have a large base of volunteers who come in and pack the boxes and backpacks for the kids,” Dito said. “And we’re going to include some winter clothes and socks and hats and things like that when colder days come over us.”

Ditto expects the operation to grow. He says the center will soon add an industrial refrigerator to store perishable food. He also hopes to add more community development courses at the new location.

“To help parents with such things, ESL, English Second Language. Also a possible computer learning program for afterschool programs, the resumption of construction lessons and similar things, ”said Dito.

He also hopes to eventually join the national chain of dream centers and expand their more than 80 locations across the country. And he’s looking for a partnership with the Food Bank of Delaware.