From the editorial page 'Our View' of the Staunton Virginia daily newspaper The News Leader:
"The objective of the Valley Mission since it opened 44 years ago is to provide a warm, safe place for people who don't have another home. The latest rendition of the Mission's mission is to make that place feel like a home.
The Mission thrift store is a large part of the shelter's identity. It stores donated clothing and household items and displays them for sale. It also takes up a lot of room, and when the thrift store was moved from the back and basement of the West Beverley Street shelter last year to a more fitting retail area on North Coalter Street, it left a lot of room for residents. And the Mission board of directors is using that room for just that — the people who call the Mission home.
Plans call for expanded living quarters, a recreational area and more room for children to use. A laundry area will be available to residents as well. In addition to the bricks and mortar improvements, there will be room for life skills classes, a computer class so residents can use technology to look for work and expanded programs with volunteers.
These all are positive steps for the residents, the Mission and the community it serves. The residents of the Mission might have come on hard times, but building them up by treating everyone with dignity will further their way back to an independent lifestyle. Giving people a reasonable chance at getting back on their feet is win-win.
Kudos to the board and staff of the Mission, as well as all those who donate making the work possible."
Opinions expressed in this feature represent the majority opinion of the newspaper's editorial board, consisting of: Roger Watson, president and publisher; David Fritz, executive editor; Cindy Corell, community conversations editor; and Jim McCloskey, editorial cartoonist.