BILLINGS, Mont. — Montana rescue mission builds an $18 million unified campus on Minnesota Ave. A key feature of the campus is that all accommodation services and beds will be on this campus.
“In addition to shelter space, we provide all the support services people need to get out of homelessness,” said Montana Rescue Mission Executive Director Matt Lundgren. “Things like mental health counseling, addiction counseling, job training, also, life coaching, job skills counseling, case management, medical clinic, daycare and we also do apartments low income on the second floor.”
Lundgren said the unified campus will double the number of accommodation beds to 300. They will also add 29 low-income apartments.
Lundgren said another new on-campus service will be vocational training:
“We will have a carpentry workshop, so that people learn the wood trades. We’ll have a metal workshop, for people to learn that. We will have an auto and small engine repair shop. will have a shop for the culinary arts. Then we work with our administrative offices to do clerical training.
He said it will benefit the whole community.
“You know, if you go to any of the car dealerships in town, they all have ‘Help Wanted’ signs,” he said. “And so, if we can take someone who is currently unemployed, we’re not robbing Peter to pay Paul, in other words, we’re jumping people around town from store to store. We Let’s bring new people into the market to work Which is great for the economy Which is great for people’s self-esteem Which is great for lifting people out of poverty with a living wage.
He said they were also modernizing the building, which is around 100 years old. One aspect of this will include adding an elevator to make the ADA building accessible.
Lundgren said they were really excited to add an outdoor courtyard and playground.
“Even in our center for elderly women and children, there was no outdoor play space. I think last night we had 17 children. We currently have no play space for them . So imagine, now we will have an outdoor play area for the kids and also an outdoor courtyard for the adults.”
He said the whole construction process is expected to take about two years. They raised about 90% of the $18 million needed, although Lundgren fears construction prices will continue to rise with inflation.