BISMARCK, N.D. (KXNET) — The Better Bismarck Campaign launched right before Thanksgiving. And the campaign has approved an extension at the City Commissions Meeting Tuesday night.

The inspiration for the campaign came from a similar campaign in Billings, Montana. The main goal of the campaign is to help the community with homelessness and to combat the opioid addiction crisis.

According to Kate Herzog with the Downtowners Association, Bismarck’s addiction crisis and homelessness are two problems that are intertwined.

“A big need right now is a no to low barrier shelter,” said Herzog. “Meaning folks who may still have an addiction or a mental health issue can still come in. They have a place to start and it’s really called the housing first model. It’s tough to treat an addiction or mental health if you don’t even have a place to live.”

Jan Nelson with BNC National Bank says she’s happy that the city is finally taking notice of the communities problems. That’s why she and BNC got involved with the campaign. She says homelessness is a chronic problem everywhere and that it can’t be ignored.

“Our community is as good as the people in it and we all have a piece of that,” said Nelson. “You can’t live someplace on an island. You are a part of this village and we have to help our neighbors.”

To donate to the campaign you can text ‘Better Bismarck’ to 801801.