By Raylene Quaney
Our version of awards has been given out to the winners of the Super Bowl Soup-a-Thon. The first place winner went to Overbrook United Methodist Church. They brought in 286 cans of soup and 34 boxes of crackers. Second place was taken by Carbondale Community United Church of Christ with 173 cans of soup; third place this year was Vassar United Methodist Church with 169 cans of soup. Honorable mentions go to The Fidelus Club in Overbrook, Lyndon Salt Creek Assembly, and Lyndon United Methodist Church. Thank you to everyone that contributed even one can of soup because you provided a meal for someone who was hungry the day they opened that can.
Prom dresses are going out on the racks this week. There is a very nice selection this year so come in early to find your special dress.
The Good Sense Budget Course will be held 8 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Saturday March 11. This will be a one-day course. Once the class has been completed class participants will be eligible to apply for assistance to help with heating or cooling cost. Assistance is provided on limited bases for any heating source whether it is gas, electric, propane or wood. You must come into Help House to pre-register and pick up your information packet which includes pre-course work to be completed before the first class. You may call 785-828-4888 with any questions.
Thank you to Brecks Green Acres and their customers for donating to Help House from their “Giving Tree” over the holiday season. A total of 278 new hats, gloves, scarfs, and socks. What a blessing! Those who received were very grateful for your generosity.
During the Osage County Spring Fling being held at the Osage County Extension Service, Help House will be providing lunch 1-1:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 22. Watch for announcements of all the exciting activities being offered during spring break for Osage County youth by a number of agencies in our county.
The 4th annual volunteer training was held Feb. 20. There were 12 volunteers attending this session. As the volunteer coordinator I would like to thank the team of “seasoned” volunteers, Terry Arb, Mary Ann Coffee, Margaret Bryant, Ann Hladky, Ted Hazelton, John Neil, and especially our director, Pam Bilyeu, for helping to make the day fun and very interesting.
The 2016 year end numbers are in and they show the need for assistance continues to grow in Osage County. The total number of households served in 2016 was 592 (588 served in 2015). The total number of unduplicated individuals in 2016 was 1,660 (1,544 in 2015). There were 84 new households receiving services in 2016. In January 2017, 242 households received food assistance, and last month in February, 219 households received food assistance.
The following is a breakdown of the number of households receiving food assistance in 2016 by ZIP codes: 66413, 63; 66414, 53; 66451, 64; 66510, 51; 66523, 186; 66524, 25; 66528, 77; 66537, 28; 66543, 34; 66856, 4; other, 3.
According to statistics provided by Harvesters, of all adults receiving food assistance from Harvesters food pantries, 52 percent are disabled or in poor health, 37 percent are retired, leaving 11 percent being the working poor.
March is National Nutrition month. When donating to your local food pantries, give healthy choices such as canned fruit in a “light” syrup, whole grain cereals (no sugars) canned meat ( packed in water or light oil).
Remember that beginning Jan. 1, 2017, Help House will be open on the second and fourth Saturdays. This will allow us to better serve the families and individuals receiving emergency food assistance.
Watch for an exciting new program to be available at Help House soon! Notice: Due to limited space Help House can no longer accept television sets.
The next Help House board meeting will be at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 14, at Help House. The public is welcome to attend.
Help House is at 131 W. 15th St., Lyndon. For more information, contact Help House at 785-828-4888, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.