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Linda Massa Youth Home receives local grants
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Linda Massa Youth Home receives local grants

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Linda Massa Youth Home has received two local grants to continue their efforts of short-term crisis intervention and longer-term group care for youth, ages 10 to 18.

The grants were from Mildenberger Motors and the Ravalli Electric Cooperative’s Power of Change.

Gina Lee Gossett, development coordinator, was contacted by Liliana Pennington in sales at Mildenberger Motors and asked if the LMYH would be interested in being a recipient of their December giving.

“For every car they sold, the buyer could choose to donate $50 to either us or the Humane Society,” Gossett said. “It was very generous of them to choose us as a recipient. These funds weren’t designated for anything in particular. We will most likely use them for general funds that will allow us to continue operating.”

The December giving amount totaled $1,250.

Linda Massa Youth Home applied for the REC Power of Change grant that totaled $1,200. It will be spent on giving comfort in the form of new mattress toppers.

“The mattresses at the home are older and go through so many kids, that giving them something soft to sleep on at night would bring them comfort,” Gossett said. “We are working with Bitterroot Furniture to get them ordered. We are very excited and grateful for receiving the grant from REC.”

Power of Change is a community outreach program funded by REC members who round up their electric bill payment each month. The POC mission is to help local organizations address unmet needs in the areas of youth, education, public safety, health, community and emergency services.

POC Board member Tanner Wilson said he “jumped at the opportunity to be a part of the POC Board.”

“This is an excellent program that will continue to have a big positive impact on our community with a nearly unnoticeable monthly monetary contribution from most REC customers,” Wilson said. “Linda Massa Youth Homes is just one of many non-profit organizations that will benefit from this program. I look forward to our next quarterly meeting to review applications and be a part of a program that truly helps people in the Bitterroot Valley.”

LMYH Program Director Valorie Unruh said the youth shelter is growing.

“We've added several new youth counselors and an education coordinator,” Unruh said. “We've kept a census of five to six youth all winter long and have happily placed two residents into foster care in 2021. Currently, we're working on scheduling an epic and snowy ski spring break trip for the residents in Darby."

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