Lake Region Community Shelter, which opened in May of last year and provides temporary housing for those in desperate need, was recently awarded a $10,000 grant by the Consensus Council of Bismarck in partnership with the Bush Foundation, based in St. Paul, Minnesota. Both are non-profit organizations.

Lake Region Community Shelter, which opened in May of last year and provides temporary housing for those in desperate need, was recently awarded a $10,000 grant by the Consensus Council of Bismarck in partnership with the Bush Foundation, based in St. Paul, Minnesota. Both are non-profit organizations.

The Consensus Council and Bush Foundation’s community innovation grant awarded to the shelter is one of many awarded to organizations around the state, totaling $130,000.

Rose Stoller, executive director of the Consensus Council, says that the grants are a “new wrinkle” for the organization. She went on to detail the Consensus Council’s fundamental mission.

“Our mission is to help citizens and leaders reach agreements on difficult issues of public policy,” Stoller said. “We’re really facilitators, consensus builders, conflict resolvers. That’s our primary work.”

Stoller says that her organization has worked closely with the Bush Foundation over the years.

“We have worked with the Bush Foundation on a number of different projects, so when they developed this community innovation grant program, they invited us to administer it in North Dakota.”

Lake Region Community Shelter board director Karen Nick couldn’t be reached for comment, but said last June that the shelter was actively pursuing grants.

"There are some grants that we're trying to look into," Nick said at the time. “What we're looking at is helping out people who are working to help themselves."

The onset of a brutal winter has created even more of a need for a place to go for those without housing, so the grant comes at a good time for the shelter.

The shelter’s biggest need since its May opening has been volunteers. According to Nick, most grants don’t cover wages, so the battle is always to find adequate staff to keep the shelter running.

"A lot of the grants we've worked with so far don't allow for (the funding) to be used for wages,” Nick said in June. “Our goal is still to do as much with volunteers as we can."

The shelter opens at 7 p.m. and closes at 7 a.m, seven days a week.

Anyone interested in volunteering or donating may reach the Lake Region Community Shelter at 701-662-3732.