Foundation fund

ARPA money is used to help the Bay Veterans Foundation Learning Center

BAY CITY, Mich. (WNEM) – The Bay Veterans Foundation will soon have a new home thanks to the Bay City Commission.

Nearly $200,000 from the US bailout has been earmarked by the commission for the organization to complete its workshop learning center, which is great news for Mike Jamrog. He is one of the board members of the association.

“Well, basically, we’re really on top of finishing the phase one shop growth structure in the multi-purpose center and programming our lounge and some of the other amenities,” Jamrog said.

The nonprofit is one of many organizations in the city that will receive money to fund community projects. Over the past few months, the commission has considered various programs that could use the funding.

After purchasing their building on N. Madison Avenue, the Bay Veterans Foundation began work to turn it into a center of learning. Unfortunately, finding funding in recent years has become a problem.

“COVID has impacted funding for many foundations and people we are asking for help, their focus has changed to COVID-19 relief, flooding in the Sanford area. Certainly the funds are needed to help these people,” Jamrog said.

The foundation not only wants to help and provide services to veterans and active duty military, but the group also wants to engage with the local community and youth. He wants to teach kids not only how to use tools, but also that there’s a lot to being a veteran.

“It teaches young people that there is more to a veteran than a GI Joe. We’ve had veterans who have tremendous leadership skills and knowledge that we’ve been trained to use and hopefully we can turn that around by passing that on to the young people,” Jamrog said.

Other groups to receive funding include the NAACP, United Way, Boys and Girls Club of the Great Lakes Region, and YMCA, which focus on programs such as women’s education and empowerment, development workforce and the engagement of young adults.

The commission allocated just over $16 million in ARPA funding, leaving over $14 million to distribute.