Hope Gospel Mission is looking to expands its property to better help their residents

Published: Aug. 7, 2023 at 9:46 PM CDT
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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) - The plot of land just outside the Hope Gospel Mission’s facility on Mercantile Drive could be the home of their new learning center.

“It’s for those who are struggling with addiction, and are in recovery. We have a program, a long term program, a holistic program that helps them in areas such as education, in job-readiness, financial literacy and of course counseling for addiction and mental health related issues,” said Brett Geboy, the community relations director for Hope Gospel.

They already have a learning center on the other side of town on Western Avenue, but the non-profit has outgrown the small space.

“We are at a point where our current learning center, or counseling center, is inadequate. The board has decided to build a new learning center, a new school, for the residents,” said Geboy.

The new space will be bigger and better equipped to help the 40 to 50 residents Hope Gospel serves.

The project though is awaiting approval for re-zoning from the Eau Claire City Council.

A public hearing on the matter was an item on Monday night’s agenda, and the city council will vote Tuesday during their regular session.

Once approved, Geboy said it will be time to fundraise for the $1.8 million project, and the new learning center should pay for itself later on down the road.

“We spent a lot of time and energy transporting our residents to and from the learning center. This will allow us, not only to have the learning center closer in proximity for our residents that can just walk to,” said Geboy. “But, also, there will be a lot of space for additional offices, private counseling, some other small group type rooms. As well as a classroom setting for residents working on their program.”

Groundbreaking for the new learning center is expected for fall of 2023, with construction expected to be done by spring of 2024.

Geboy said there are no plans yet for the old learning center when the new one is built and fully operational.