By JEFFREY HEYDEN-KAYE
April 19, 2017 · 1:31 PM
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Ponoka’s Neighbourhood Place sent out a letter last week announcing that it will officially close its doors at the end of the month. The group has been trying to stay afloat for the last four years but appears to have run out of options. / Google Maps

For the last 16 years Ponoka’s Neighbourhood Place has offered a variety of services to families and individuals.

That will all end on April 30. The association sent out an email to various community groups April 10 that its doors will be shut at the end of the month.

“Due to a lack of funding we just cannot continue to operate,” states the email from executive director Keith Williams.

For the last four years Neighbourhood Place has been trying to find ways to keep the doors open but it appears that is no longer sustainable.

“Neighborhood Place has worn several hats over the last 16 years including contracts with Child and Family Services, Alberta Employment and Immigration and Alberta Health Services but we have not been able to obtain a new contract with any government department in order to carry on our work,” states the email.

“We have maintained our position in Ponoka for all these years without any financial help from the town or county and have relied on the generosity of some local groups for specific purchases needed to continue operations,” it adds.

In the email the Neighbourhood Place board thanked the Ponoka Elks and Seafield Social Workers for annual cash contributions as well as the Country Quilters for donating handmade quilts to the Secret Santa project.

Another program that will be concluded unless another group takes it over is the Coats for the Cold, which took in donated coats for the winter months.

“Your generosity in helping the less fortunate in Ponoka has been appreciated by hundreds of recipients. It is hoped that we can find a new location and sponsor for this program in a convenient location,” states the email.

It is unclear what will happen to the current space as it is owned by the province. Little Treasures Family Day Home is also closing its doors at the same time while it is believed that Catholic Social Services will still have offices in the space.

Little Treasures Family Day Home and Neighborhood Place are hosting a garage sale on May 6 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

 

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