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Mahoney House Director Scott Brand and Assistant Director Jo Philpott gave the Lemhi County Commissioners an update of the facility’s latest goals and received county support in return.

Brand said the premise of the Mahoney House effort towards area young people is based on the fact one adult can make all the difference.

Brand said he has heard over and over again that there is nothing for kids to do in Salmon and he totally disagrees. To that end the Mahoney House is gathering mountain biking and fishing equipment and other materials to facilitate young people being able to get out and experience all that Lemhi County has to offer. He said he sees the program as prevention based.

The Mahoney House is also conducting emotional well-being classes in collaboration with local schools. There are classes for eighth grade boys and girls similar to the Strong Boys/Strong Girls program created several years ago by Denise Bender. He said that for a child, domestic violence is the most dangerous of all childhood experiences and rather than succumbing to those damages his goal is to give kids a healthy alternative. The Mahoney House has purchased ten mountain bikes to use in enjoying unique recreational activities which at the same time will provide an opportunity for youngsters to establish healthy boundaries and expectations of how they are to be treated.

Philpott said that part of the program is to utilize community mentors who go out with the kids and teach such things as fly fishing. She said the idea is to pull in different community mentors for the different classes.

Brand explained that while the Mahoney House fund raisers cover most needs extra funds are needed for the outdoor equipment and program expansion

Prior to the meeting, the commissioners had received a letter from the Mahoney House asking for some of the county’s millennial funding. The Millennial funds come from this state and county’s portion of the Master Settlement Agreement reached in 1998 between the four major US tobacco product manufacturers and 46 states that initiated the legal action. Idaho was one of the 46.

After Brand and Philpott left the meeting commissioners Ken Miner, Rick Snyder and Brett Barsalou conferred with County Clerk of the Court Terri Morton as to how much money is available in the fund. After assurances regarding retaining reserves from the available funding for other settlement appropriate purposes, an official motion was made and passed to give the Mahoney House $21,000 towards its prevention and outdoor motivation program.

The Mahoney House has served the community since 1994.

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