Lisa Froom

Lisa Froom

Vernon’s Upper Room Mission collects support

Vernon's Upper Room Mission is receiving a $100,000 gaming grant that will ensure outreach programs are available...

An agency that helps people get back on their feet is receiving a boost.

The Upper Room Mission is receiving a $100,000 gaming grant that will ensure outreach programs are available to those who need assistance.

“It’s foundational to making life changes,” said Lisa Froom, mission general manager.

“It’s all about moving forward.”

All registered clients can participate in Fresh Start, which focuses on health, finances, relationships, self-esteem and life goals.

Some of the clients work and pay high rent, while others are on disability or old age pension.

Others struggle with a lack of employment, substance abuse and mental health issues.

As part of Fresh Start, some clients sort through beverage containers donated by community members. It’s a way of moving them towards employment.

“It will make a world of difference,” said Jake Spoor, Upper Room president, of the government grant.

The opportunity for a  grant arose after Vernon-Monashee Eric Foster visited the mission last year.

“People are eating here every day and they need help,” said Foster.

While some residents may suggest the mission exists because of inadequate government support systems, Foster disagrees.

“Community agencies can provide services at the local level more efficiently than government running them. Decisions are made local. They have a good grasp of local issues,” he said.

The $100,000 could only go towards programs and not capital, specifically the current renovation of the mission kitchen.

The project’s total bill is $165,000 and about $110,000 is still required.

“Really good people are doing everything they can to help us,” said Froom of donations.

Kitchen renovations will continue for the next two to three weeks.

To support the kitchen fundraiser, drop by the Upper Room Mission at 3403 27th Ave. or call 25-549-1231.