The Cedar Valley Manor project is now underway after the first shovel of sod was turned over in a ceremony June 15 to mark the beginning of construction.
This new seniors housing facility was organized by Mission Association for Seniors Housing, a non-profit society.
The land was donated by the Friesen family, who moved to Mission in 1941. Abram and Margaret had seven of their nine children with them when they settled in Mission.
They lived in a rhubarb shed at Cedar Street and 14 Avenue before they bought 16 acres on Cedar between Cherry and Best Avenues from an American woman who had been unable to pay her property taxes, according to Eleanor Lobb, who spoke at the special event.
They purchased the land for $1,000 and everyone pitched in to help, including their daughters Margaret Neufeld, Agnes Peters and Martha Neufeld, who were all at the June 15 ceremony.
The land was subdivided over time and when the local Mennonite congregation found they were outgrowing their building on Ferndale Road in 1951, the Friesens donated a piece of their property, which now houses the entire Cedar Valley Church complex, which consists of several buildings, including spaces for the Kumon Program, a child care centre and Valley Christian School for several years.
“One of the driving forces in that construction project was the late John Janzen (a member of the church),” said Lobb. “John also had a unique vision to see a senior housing project built adjacent to the church.”
Seventeen years later, that dream is now a reality.
Cedar Valley Manor offers affordable housing for independent and active seniors in the community. For more information visit cedarvalleymanor.com.