Adult and Teen Challenge held a grand opening at their latest thrift store and community offices location on Saturday, with mixed emotions.  

President and CEO of ATC of Central Canada, Daniel Emond says, while they are humbled and honoured to do the grand opening in Steinbach, this has been one of the most difficult summers that they’ve ever had.  

“With just the overwhelming need of ministry needs, but then also with a lack of donations through the summer. We’ve had a shortfall of donations, actually almost a quarter million dollars less in donations than last year, and that’s just general giving donations. So, we’re really asking people to consider making donations, as well to help us kind of get caught up, because the needs are great, and we’ve increased our services drastically, particularly in the Steinbach area. So, I'm going to keep calling everybody, please help us if you can.”

A man with light skin tone holds a micorophone in front of an Adult & Teen Challenge flag and backdropPresident and CEO of ATC of Central Canada, Daniel Emond, speaks at the grand opening. (Adi Loewen/Golden West)

Emond says while monetary donations are down, they continue to ask for clothing and other thrift store donations. He says Canadian Tire Steinbach recently donated a cube-truck to ATC Steinbach which will be used to pick-up donations in the area, 

“So, that’s exciting. But it does need about $10,000 worth of repairs that we’re fundraising for as well. You know there’s so many needs and we’re just going to keep going, but yes, financial donations are our greatest need right now.” 

Emond notes their men’s home at 73 Westwood Drive, which they acquired two-years ago from Southland Church, has made a huge impact on people needing freedom from addictions,  

“We’re so thankful, but we very quickly came to the realization that to operate a facility like that, with the staff and the bills and the maintenance and the insurance and all that stuff is close to $1-million dollars that we’ve never needed to raise before as well, so we started that last year – again, when I say we’re down donations, people really stepped up last year to get us started, we just need people to continuously step-up and help us. We know that the best giving season is coming, but we’re going through a lean summer.”

A group of 9 people hold a large red ribbon. It falls in the centre as a man holds a large pair of scissors in the air.Adult and Teen Challenge Steinbach ribbon-cutting event on Saturday, August 26, 2023. (Adi Loewen/Golden West)

Emond notes his appreciation to the local advisory committee that has been instrumental in opening the new facility, along with several local businesses that have helped raise money and have donated their time and products to renovate the 354 Main Street location of the Steinbach ATC offices and SuperThrift Store.  

“I think this is a great milestone and celebration day. I’ve been getting goosebumps when I hear stories of what God is doing in the community here in Steinbach through Adult and Teen Challenge, and some of the partnerships that are forming with churches and businesses. It’s really, really exciting.” 


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