MISSOULA – The battle over the state budget in Helena is continuing, but one Missoula program has already been forced to change their funding model.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Missoula — which has lost $120,000 of annual state, federal, and private grants — has been restructuring for the past six months.
The program — which has been running for the past 50 years — is asking for help to keep running.
They estimate that 15,000 children in Missoula have found mentors through the program during this time.
Big Brothers Big Sisters has already reduced staff and is considering relocating. They’re also trying to raise $400,000 in the next 30 days.
Scott Johnson says he joined the board almost 30 years ago because he believes in what they do.
“It helps take care of a segment of the community that is underprivileged, doesn’t have the normal role models, and has a higher chance of getting into trouble,” he explained.