With this new year there are many opportunities to improve the lives of citizens of Montgomery County. We are all well aware that our cost of living challenges all of us daily. For those whose income is limited that challenge can be a burden that cannot be met. Because we are a caring community, we need to seek opportunities to help those who struggle to keep themselves and their households together.
The FISH organization in this community has served as life support to generations of people who live here. With incredibly low unemployment the experiences of those who face these challenges are the working poor, elderly and children. Seeking resources to assist these people is a constant issue.
We come to you, our community, for assistance to make everyone better. You have an opportunity to help in so many ways.
First, you can share your time and talents to help our organization help others. If you would like to work as a volunteer you may contact us at the FISH phone number of 765-362-3474. Because we have food services, clothing bank and linen bank at different sites and days you may wish to think about how you can best help and when. Our opening hours are posted in the newspaper daily.
Second, you can provide goods that can assist each program. The open hours posted regulary in the Journal Review are also times for you to drop off food, clothing or linens. Our food bank has been particularly hard hit and is serving more than thirty households four days a week. Clients are only allowed to come every two weeks and whatever we have to share is limited by what we can acquire. Limits are enforced to share our food with as many people as possible. We serve a client choice food bank so if you do not like tomato soup you do not take it. Our clothing and linen banks need clean and in good condition items that someone else may use with great joy. Clothing for children is always a need. Men and women need decent clothing to work and live among us. Sheets and bath towels, curtains, and other home goods are always welcome.
Third, financial resources are stretched to keep these three programs going. Our efforts are frugal but giving every client one package of meat for two weeks is what we are able to provide at present. We focus on other protein foods but there are limits. Our local grocer provides much of what we give but we use other resources such as Food Finders in Lafayette to obtain products. Anyone having connections to additional resources should contact us with information we can use. Of course the money we receive is a tax deductible donation because we are a 501(c)(3) charity.
So all of this leads to how you can help. The following information may assist your ability to connect and help. Telephone is 765-362-3474; and mailing address is FISH, P.O. Box 261, Crawfordsville, IN 47933;
The location for the Food Bank is at St. Bernard’s Church (rear building); the location for the Clothing Bank is Wabash Avenue Presbyterian Church (rear entrance and drop box for clothing) ; and the Linen Bank is at First Baptist Church (State Road 32).
This is your community. How can you make it better?
Linda Cherry is president of FISH of Montgomery County.