Grant provides a lift to veterans

Disabled veterans have a wonderful new service at their fingertips.

Catholic Community Services at the Everett Family Center received a $132,350 federal grant through the Puget Sound Regional Council Coordinated Grant Program.

They’ve created a handy transportation plan for veterans who live in rural and outlying areas.

“The new program provides door-to-door services,” said Debra Bordsen, Catholic Community Services volunteer services recruiter. “We look to provide service to such areas as Sultan, Gold Bar, Darrington, Arlington, Stanwood, etc.”

The service is free and the disability does not need to be related to their time in the military. Volunteer drivers will pick up veterans at a place convenient to the veteran and transport them to the Veterans Administrative Hospital in Seattle and American Lake, VA clinics in Lake City and Mount Vernon, local vet centers, grocery stores, commissaries, salons and other essential personal hygiene appointments.

For more information, call 425-257-2101, ext. 3336 or 888-240-8572.

“We are trying as many different ways as we can to reach out to this much deserving population in our community,” Bordsen says.

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How nice for the Camano Island Library.

They aren’t groveling for last-minute ticket sales.

The Camano Island Library Auction begins at 5 p.m. Saturday. Tickets were $65 and $75.

The evening includes appetizers and a full Italian meal including salad, focaccia bread, pasta, an entree (either meat or vegetarian) and wine. Catering is provided by Pacific Northwest Catering.

As Herald writer Gale Fiege wrote Feb. 22, the future of the island’s public library could rest on the success of the fundraiser.

“If the Camano Island Library Friends can raise $20,000 at the group’s Reading Between the Vines auction and dinner, the library could live to see another year,” Fiege wrote.

The library was established by Sno-Isle Libraries in 2007 as a three-year pilot project to gauge whether there was enough interest on Camano Island for a permanent facility. The idea was that at the end of the three years, voters would be asked to approve a bond issue to fund the library.

Last summer, the Sno-Isle Libraries Board of Trustees approved an indefinite extension of the Camano pilot project based on a commitment by the Camano Island Library Friends to raise $20,000 a year to offset the cost of leasing the library’s current space.

Karen Schmidt of Camano Island wrote about family experiences at the library for the March edition of the national magazine Woman’s Day.

In the essay, she described the library as a resource center, the focal point for her son’s education, and a great money saver.

She said there won’t be any tickets Saturday at the fundraiser door.

“We’re sold out,” Schmidt said. “Hallelujah.”

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Beer can be a good thing.

It’s made with water, right?

Stilly-Snohomish Fisheries Enhancement Task Force received $5,000 from Anheuser-Busch and River Network to support conservation.

The task force won a You Vote — $5,000 for Rivers contest in Washington and Oregon.

They plan to use the donation to upgrade technology used for salmon habitat restoration projects within the Stillaguamish and Snohomish river basins, says Cara Ianni, education program manager for the Stilly-Snohomish Fisheries Enhancement Task Force.

Each year, the task force involves more than 1,500 volunteers in salmon enhancement projects, such as tree plantings along waterways and river cleanup efforts.

River Network, Connecting People, Saving Rivers is based in Portland, Ore. They believe in the beer and water idea.

They’ve teamed with another beer company — MillerCoors — to award $50,000 in grants to support watershed protection programs.

Kristi O’Harran: 425-339-3451, oharran@heraldnet.com.

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