Niagara Gazette — A $12,000 grant from the Grigg-Lewis Foundation is earmarked for upgrading the Community Missions' Aurora House.
Established in 1995, Aurora House is designed to transform the lives of youth diagnosed as severely emotionally disturbed. It is the only children's community residence in Niagara County licensed by the state Office of Mental Health. A spokesperson said the eight-bed facility, located in Lockport, serves the eight counties of Western New York and provides youth with growth opportunities. Its goal is to prepare them to return to their homes or to move on to the next stage of their lives.
"Once again the Grigg-Lewis Foundation has graced us with their generosity," said Robyn L. Krueger, executive director of the Niagara Falls-based Community Missions. Krueger noted that the foundation has been "a wonderful partner" of the missions for a number of years.
The upgrading project will include the installation of new countertops and cabinets for the facility's large kitchen. While serving as a hub for the youth and staff, the kitchen also fosters the teaching of daily living skills. These include meal planning and preparation, along with proper dining etiquette.
"We are so excited for this gift from the foundation," said Marilee Clark, the Mission's director of youth services. "Aurora House has served a challenging population for nearly two decades, and its kitchen has been showing its age."
The Grigg-Lewis Foundation, established in 1968 with a gift from Henrietta Grigg Lewis, maintains an extremely low-profile while having a strong impact in eastern Niagara County and beyond, a spokesman said.